When consumers are looking…is your CPG food or beverage brand anywhere to be found?
In order to be found, you have to occupy space in two places: 1) in the minds of consumers, and 2) on the shelf at retail.
When consumers are ready to purchase your category do they know and remember you, and can they find you in-store?
Seems pretty basic, right? But you would be amazed at how often these two basic fundamentals are either overlooked or taken for granted.
If consumers don’t know or remember your brand when they are on their path to purchase, you aren’t even in the consideration process—you’re just not in the game.
One of the primary goals of your advertising is to continually refresh the consumer’s memory of your brand—to remind them about you. This drastically improves your chances of being recalled in the purchase cycle.
Recall is much easier in categories that are purchased frequently, because your brand can become a habit. A routine go-to item. That doesn’t mean they will buy your brand, but they are purchasing in your category every week.
But truth be known, most categories are not purchased as frequently as you would think, so memory plays a key role. For instance, consumers only purchase ketchup, on average, 4 times per year, potato chips 7 times, and cereal 21 times. There can be very large gaps in time between when consumers purchase these categories.
And, remember, the other added dimension is that just because they purchase X times, doesn’t mean they’re buying the same brand. Sorry, but most consumers switch brands (I know that hurts, but it’s true. Loyalty is scarce in the CPG food and beverage world).
The other dilemma is…are you even on-shelf? When I walk the stores, monitoring the brands we represent, my experience drastically changes from store to store—even within the same banners. Consumers won’t spend time intently looking. If they can’t quickly and easily find your brand, they will buy another or forego the purchase.
And sometimes your product simply just isn’t there! Research shows that in one in three shopping trips, consumers encounter out-of-stock items.
This becomes even more critical when you are using advertising to drive consumers to purchase. They have to be able to quickly and easily find you.
And, what about new product launches, when you’re told product will be on-shelf by a certain date and it isn’t? Or even within the same chain, it’s on-shelf in some stores, but not others.
MENTAL and PHYSICAL AVAILABILITY are key to the success of your brand. These are not once and done items you can check off your to-do list. They are part of your ongoing brand marketing and maintenance.
In consumers’ minds and on-shelf at retail—you need to BE THERE!