Mike Anthony @ engage consultants

Mike Anthony on Shopper Marketing

1 Thing You Need To Measure To Guarantee An Improvement In Marketing ROI….(Continued)

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In a store recently I saw a fabulous case of terrible in-store execution. I wished I’d had this picture when I wrote my recent blog post on compliance. I have no idea how this happened – there are lots of factors that could have contributed –  but here is a potential (and completely fictional) scenario which I know many of you will find all too familiar.


Scene One: 

A Conference Room – This morning. 

The CEO sits with the head of marketing, and the head of sales. No-one smiles

CEO – “What went wrong?”

Marketing Head – “It was sales”

Sales Head – “It was marketing”


Flashback – The same conference room six months ago 

A research agency presents to the marketing team

“83% of our target consumers say they would definitely or probably buy this new product”

The Marketing Director smiles: “This will be our biggest activity of the year”


Flashback:  A Conference Room – a few months ago.

The advertising agency is presenting to the marketing team 

“It’s a 360 campaign. It follows the consumer all the way to the point of purchase (pause), the “First moment of truth” (presenter makes air speech marks with his fingers)”


Flashback: Scene Three: A week ago.

Tracking agency presents to marketing team

“We got the awareness, everyone loved it. Our Brand preference is sky high” (two people high five)


Flashback:  Scene four:

At a desk, key account manager:

“Got the highest sell-in ever for a new launch. Awesome. Bonus here I come”


Flashback Scene Five: Yesterday.

Marketing head looks at latest share report.

“Our share has dived. It must be…. Competitors? Were competitors doing anything at the time? (someone across the table shrugs). “I blame sales” I bet they screwed up execution.


Return to present day.

“What went wrong?”

“It was sales – they screwed up the listing”

“It was marketing – their advertising was too light”

It could have been either. But perhaps the marketing team did exactly what was expected of them. Perhaps the sales team did too.

Or perhaps it was attention to detail. Perhaps someone missed something.  Perhaps if the KPIs for marketing and sales had been different someone would have made sure what was supposed to have happened actually happened.

When things go wrong like this, all of the investment is immediately turned into cost. It’s not just a waste of listing fees and point of sale materials – but all of the above the line campaigning is potentially wasted. In the case above it is clear why share is down – no-one can find the product –  but too often these scenarios play out and no-one actually knows what happened; even knows that there was a problem – because nobody went to the store to check the actual situation.

In a workshop this week I asked a client (a cross-functional team of sales, marketing and trade marketing) which of them would lose part or all of their bonus if in-store compliance was poor. Not one of them.

Consumer goods companies often pay a lot of money for research and insight to help them understand what should happen in-store. Unfortunately whether it actually happens is not always given the same level of attention.  If someone had a bonus resting on whether the plan was executed correctly or not, perhaps more attention would be paid.

At least by measuring what actually happened in-store the debate could focus on the actual facts, and how to make sure it doesn’t happen again.


Written by Mike Anthony

June 8, 2012 at 3:53 pm

Posted in Uncategorized

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