Success in Distribution Channels and Customer Engagement


Identify brands with a strong digital media presence that are succeeding in distributing their products and engaging their customers in clever or innovative ways in order to inform a cross-industry analysis that highlights best practices in product awareness and adoption. The scope is global, but with a particular focus on Latin America.

Early Findings

Latin American Distribution Channels and Customer Engagement

  • Digital ad spending in Latin America is expected to reach $9.17 billion, representing a 14.1% growth since the previous year.
  • Display ads represent 57.4% of digital ad spending in Latin America and search ads represent 37.1%.
  • Advertisers in Latin America are focusing on consumer trust, data privacy, and video advertising.
  • McDonald's focuses on locally relevant marketing, menu innovations, service variations, and sourced ingredients to engage with customers in 119 countries.
  • The fast-food chain released a campaign in Latin America called "Glad You Came" that showcased the local consumer's cultural pastime of entertaining guests in their homes.
  • Coca-Cola recognized that Argentine and Chilean consumers are eager to purchase eco-friendly and low-calorie products, so the company launched a natural, low-calorie soda.

Global Customer Engagement

  • Amazon, Southwest Airlines, Zappos, and JetBlue have all gained a reputation for strong customer experience.
  • Some best practices in customer experience include a customer-first focus, empathy for the customer, a holistic approach, and an agile approach to development.
  • Wendy's has recently enjoyed success with customer engagement through its comedic approach on Twitter.
  • In 2017, 70% of US retailers reported that they were prioritizing customer personalization as a way to engage with customers through happy birthday emails, recommendations, and more.

Global Distribution Channels

  • Some examples of companies with innovative distribution channels include BuzzFeed, BlueApron, and Pixelz.
  • Australian soap company Aesop has gained popularity in the US due to its innovative distribution channels. The company features its products in hotels, restaurants, and boutiques that well match its aesthetic and mission-driven profile.
  • Models for distribution channels in the upcoming years will likely center on bringing personalized, intuitively placed products into the home through collaborations with trusted services.

Research proposal:

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