At the time of writing, there are exactly 95 days to Christmas. That’s 13 Fridays left till we get to enjoy family, friends and the joy that is the festive season. Well, that’s the feeling for consumers anyway, but for retailers and suppliers, the lead up to Christmas is the most stressful and important time of the year. We know our clients need to ensure they maximise every opportunity during the busiest time of the year.
So how do suppliers stand out during one of the heaviest shopping periods of the year? Well, this varies with Product, Brand, Category but what we can all agree on is the need to have a Christmas strategy. When it comes to field sales support, what we at Logobrand know is that there are 5 ways in which we, as a field operation, can support our clients to stand out at this crucial time.
1. Planning – This is key to ensuring you really stand out at Christmas because not everything will go as you expect! But the supplier and field operation which plans for all scenarios is normally the most successful at this time of year. It’s never too early to start this process, as the more time you allow yourself, the better prepared you can become.
2. Distribution – A lot of companies and clients will produce WIGIG items or packaging is a key support action Logobrand can assist with. Rotation of shelf stock is crucial to ensure old packs are sold through and new packs arrive on shelf.
3. Availability – We’ve all seen the rush and empty shelves at Christmas, but luckily Logobrand can help our clients by ensuring we continue to merchandise and order stock to maintain seasonal availability. Our Availability Manager tool really helps us identify the stores which need this most, and ensures we direct resource to the right sites, at the right time. This is a huge ROI driver for any supplier given the Lost Sales created by any product which is unavailable on shelf. Unfortunately store staff can only do so much and so they need the helping hand from Logobrand to help shelves remain full.
4. Visibility – With all the noise and nearly every brand and product fighting for space during this time, visibility becomes even more important. Logobrand works with clients to create and equip the team with the ultimate POS kit, ensuring we are armed to tackle this head on.
5. Execution – This is the vanguard of our 5 strategies! Execution of plans, promotions, POS, feature space, shelf planograms and so on become a major challenge at this time of year for our clients as stores change their focus from following the plan to simply emptying the warehouse and selling through stock. The Logobrand field team focuses on execution throughout the season, ensuring our clients plans are activated and maintained through all the noise.
We’d urge all suppliers to review their Christmas instore plans and ensure the seasonal strategy is robust and locked down. And most importantly shared with your field execution team to ensure perfect execution in store.
Jimmy Hayton, Account Director