LAS VEGAS – Walgreens, the storied drugstore chain founded in Chicago in 1901, took a bigger step into the digital age with the founding of its retail media network in 2020. Walgreens Advertising Group, or WAG, is another way for the company to connect customers with trusted brands.

“I always wanted to be part of a historic brand that is deeply connected to the community,” Abi Subramanian, group vice president of customer marketing, loyalty and Walgreens Advertising Group, said in this interview with Beet.TV contributor Tameka Kee at Shoptalk. “And I’m deeply drawn to our vision of becoming the leader in imagining our local healthcare and well-being for all.”

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As with other major retailers that sell advertising, Walgreens seeks to differentiate its media platform with audience targeting based on people’s purchase histories and other insights. Its loyalty program offers customers savings and other benefits in exchange for providing their data in a privacy-centric environment.

“We are very proud of our well established myWalgreens loyalty program,” Subramanian said. “As part of the next evolution of retail media, being able to leverage what we have learned from the loyalty side and to be able to bring that experience together for our consumers to really understand what they’re looking for and to serve their needs is going to be critical.”

The Walgreens Advertising Group has a white-label demand-side platform created in collaboration with Epsilon, the marketing technology company owned by Publicis Groupe.

“What we have built with WAG DSP powered by Epsilon and the opportunity to apply those learnings into our onsite owned-and-operated ad products — and to deliver the personalized experience is what I’m looking forward to,” Subramanian said.

You’re watching “Retail Media: Let’s Talk Shop,” a Beet.TV Leadership Series at Shoptalk 2024, presented by Epsilon. For more videos from this series, please visit this page.