A recent white paper by Jim Barnes of BMAI Strategy describes 10 different scenarios for shopping at the mall, each with different goals.
- Recreational: where the outing and entertainment choices are what's important
- Purposive: planned and with a goal in mind to buy something specific
- Social: spending time with others is more important than actually buying things
- Reconnaissance: looking for inspiration or 'what's new'
- As a Treat: driven by a mood and desire to reward oneself
- As a Quest: looking for a 'great find' is the end result
- As Entertainment: people watching and window shopping
- Word-of-Mouth: following up directly on the advice of others
- Event-Based: a subset of 'purposive trips' where an occasion drives the search and purchase
- "Going-to-the-Mall": the place itself is the attraction. Like Starbucks, it is the "third place"
So in addition to thinking about channel and device as part of our communication blueprint we need to look how we can serve the right blend of content in these situations. And yes, we have to figure out intent and context first.