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Where Does Your Brand Fit In The Marketplace in 2014?

Without making any dramatic changes retail companies, or brands, can increase profits by reviewing their processes.

For some, this is no revelation, but for many, it simply isn’t something that is naturally focused upon, hence our reason for bringing it to the fore in this blog.

Importantly, your in-store marketing plans should be measurable, so that you can be sure they are really achievable. They should be realistic and have a feasible timeframe in which you can achieve your goals. Don’t be too vague, detail can make the difference between accomplishing your objectives or otherwise.

Managing a promotional campaign from start to finish can be a daunting task for any retailer or brand manager, not least of all due to the great effort in creating a promotion that will catch attention, inform consumers, increase brand awareness and sell through. While the retail industry has been successful in developing promotions and driving increased business, many chains and brands are let down when it comes to evaluating their processes to determine ways to eliminate waste, reduce cost, increase brand awareness and further improve speed to market.

By taking a look at the individual elements of the promotional process, it may be possible for you to offer a smoother, quicker and more efficient promotional process that allows for increased flexibility to keep up, or ahead of, changing market needs. Below are a few Easypack tips that could help move your promotion from a great idea to an in-store marketing success in the most efficient way possible.

1. Material specification & Application:

When working with your POS/POP provider, discuss durability and functionality:
Define your objective!

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Is your POP/POS going to be in-store for 3 months or a year?

Where will it be situated in store? If against a wall, is a rear print really necessary?

Does your display have to be co-packed or is a flat-pack an option?

Will it be outdoors and subject to extreme weather conditions?

Working out these details ahead of time will save you valuable time and effort. Get your brief right and make sure your POP provider can test your materials to ensure they will stay in prime condition for the duration of the promotion

2. Artwork & Pre-press:

Are your artwork files print ready?

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Creative agencies, or in-house design teams, often fail to ensure the correct format is sent to the printer, which will not only lead to confusion and possible errors in the final artwork, but of course will delay your print production. Make sure to check with your print partner on their acceptable high resolution print formats.

3. Proofing

Consider the time and cost of which type of proofing to use. If you have a new relationship with a printer, you may want to consider an on-site press approval. To save yourself some time, soft proofing and hard copy proofs are good options to see samples of your promotional pieces first hand before full-scale production begins. However, if you have an established and trusted relationship with your print partner online proofing can be acceptable and is the simplest and most cost effective proofing process.

4. Kitting & Packing

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Promotions typically involve a number of print and POP elements. You must always determine which parts will be collated in kits and shipped together and which stores will be receiving which kit.

Are these different elements coming together from different vendors?

If they are, make sure all suppliers have the deadline confirmed and understand their job requirements. Better yet, consider an End to End Supplier that manufacture and print all the pieces then kit, pack and ship from one location. Also, make sure you have determined the dimensions of the outer box so that your kit is delivered to store undamaged and fit for purpose. Test ship if necessary, just to be sure.

If pre-filled display units are required, make sure that your co-packer has a production plan in place that ensures your final dates are met. When your supplier processes your order in line with your Critical Path/Time-line, the Co-Packing Manager should ideally liaise with you on stock requirements, coordinating the in-bound stock, the production schedule and the outbound schedules for delivery to the retailer.

5. Distribution

Are the kits being delivered to you, a distribution centre or to each store directly?

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Make sure your fulfilment company are fully aware of all deadlines and varied shipping addresses. Depending on the final retail destination, it is often better to use the retailers preferred carrier. Working closely with major grocers and retail chains we’ve found that using their recommended couriers ensures there is no confusion or delay with the booking in or acceptance procedures of deliveries.

6. Communication

It may be the simplest part of the plan but often it causes the biggest headache. Everyone’s efforts can be wasted if wrong information is communicated to your print/POP supplier as it can then filter all the way through to the retail stores.

Strict kit and inventory management, production reporting, package tracking and every other part of the process should have data recorded accurately so that subsequent communications to all involved ensure smooth and consistently accurate outcomes.

Your kitting andpacking supplier must have processes and systems in place along with the necessary reporting procedures, to give you the peace of mind that your promotional kits will be delivered exactly as specified.

So, continue 2014 with a determination to polish up what you already have before starting new initiatives; it gives a much better foundation to build on. You could be amazed at the improvement in your retail results just by focussing on precise execution.

We wish you every success for the rest of 2014. If you have any questions or comments, please get in touch now we’ll be pleased to hear from you. Please call 01638 715922.