Your trade budget combined with the setup of new promotional displays can be one of the most effective  growth tools your sales team has in its arsenal to drive incremental revenue.  Not only does it provide an immediate sales spike, but it can also be the foundation for long-term sustained distribution and velocity growth.

Promotional planning is often completed well in advance of rollout, however there are still plenty of ways boots on the ground retail execution teams and key account managers can squeeze more sales out of each display promotional cycle as it occurs.

Here are a few tips and tricks we have learned from working with leading CPG companies:

    1. Real-time Scorecarding is a MUST 

      Visibility and measurement is unfortunately still a gap for most teams.  Lack of knowledge on how to deploy some of the latest measurement techniques, or the misconception that the cost of doing so is too high is one of the  top reasons we hear leaders have gaps in this area.  Thanks to the latest in technology, including crowdsourced data collection and automated reporting capabilities, promotional scorecarding is easier and less expensive than ever before.  And best of all, it can give you the immediate and actionable insight you need to find low hanging sales opportunities.

    2. Systematic Prep and Prioritization is Possible with Integrated Systems 

      It’s very common for team execution cycles and promotional plans to be misaligned. This is not a surprise as it can be very difficult to manage the timing of many different activities across teams, products, and accounts.  However, the money being spent on trade, particularly on display promotions, is  such an important asset to be leveraged for sales growth that you don’t want to drop the ball simply due to a lack of  team communication.  This means that a systematic process that helps the team keep track of and manage priorities across a promotional calendar is critical.   Having automation, promotional and execution systems talking to each other is foundational to keeping teams in sync and gaining an advantage over the competition.

    3. Fact Based Education Works

      Getting product and displays setup on time is one of the key promotional period opportunities.  However, it’s usually possible in some accounts for good sales teams to gain even more incremental space or get the retailers to take increased inventory in support of the promotions. The promotion is the trigger for a conversation that may not have been possible otherwise. Equipping your sales team with easily accessible data that provides a fact based rationale to the retailers, or in some cases the distributor  can result in 20%+ higher sales in each cycle!

    4. Closed Loop Communication Mitigates Sales Loss

      Even when teams do everything right, they can still  lose a lot of value during and after their promotional periods if  they lose track of open communication.  In some cases companies invest in large field teams that are out driving new incremental displays and orders, but then have no way to determine whether it was actually executed after they initially communicated the order to their distributor.  Having closed loop communication within the team and within your external partners is a key component of world class execution. 

      This is easier said than done, but using communication tools, analytics, follow-up automation and alerts together effectively can make a significant impact while minimizing how much individual sales team members need to track independently.  

    5. Incentivize and Celebrate Every Cycle

      These cycles are never ending. Before the last one ends, another one is beginning.  It can feel like a hamster wheel for teams trying to manage it all.  The best teams create a culture where reward, pride, and opportunity for team success exist with each cycle.  Small things like leaderboards, photos, and spiffs go a long way to helping the team feel recognized for their hard work and keep up their enthusiasm for the next promotional opportunity.

      We wish you much success at the shelf in 2021. If you have a new display promotion you are preparing to run in the coming year, Shelvspace may be able to help you maximize the revenue tied to that promotion.

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