If I can’t see you, I can’t buy you

A recent trip to the supermarket to buy fondue cheese reminded me that, even In a world of sexy social media, the good old basics of marketing are still vitally important. In this case, the lesson was about the importance of on-shelf display.

I'd been sent to buy a packet of Emmi fondue cheese. Time was pressing and I was in a rush. I got to to the supermarket, avoided the temptation to go store-checking on my latest projects, and got to the cheese section. I then started scanning for the said cheese packet. Scan. Scan. Scan. Move along the shelf. Scan again. No luck. "Where's the bloody cheese?!" I said to myself in frustration.

If this had been a normal shopping trip, I would given up. But I had to come back with the cheese. So on I went. Finally, this is what I saw: Emmi cheese on promotion, but with the packets  displayed flat, end-on and almost invisible.

A few importat lessons here.

1. Promote only when visible

Before you spend loadsamomey with your friendly retail partners on yet another price promotion (UK brands spend c. £2billion a year on these), check you can see the bloody brand.

2. Brand the end of your pack

I though all brands had cottoned onto this, but this examples shows this is not the case. There is a good chance your nice new pack will be laid flat on the shelf. So make sure you have branded this bit of the pack as well.

3. Make your pack shelf ready

You can see from the photo above that the President cheese box next to the Emmi one is stood up. You know why? For the simple reason that when stood up it fits on the shelf, whereas the Emmi one doesn't. Simple, basic stuff. But this sort of mistake can have dramatically reduce the effectivness of your communication and promotion spending.

In conclusion, don't spend all your life in the office in front of your PC or being bored in board meetings. Get out in the trade, and check your brand is fit for purpose and visible.

By the way, this is what I should have seen on shelf. And very nice it was too.

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