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Two Events Will Connect Trading Partners

April 30, 2010 by Newsfeed Editor  
Filed under Friday Focus

ifbat2tWith the positive momentum still in the air from the Manufacturer/Retailer Connection Session at Spring Conference, it is time to remind you of some upcoming events that continue the theme. The 7th Annual IFBA Top to Top Executive Business Conference will be held May 18-20, 2010 at Renaissance Chicago Hotel in Chicago. StratConn Retail Execution Resources meetings will be held on July 28-29 in Chicago in affiliation with the In–Store Marketing Institute. Both events are designed to bring at-retail resources together with brands and retailers who are seeking help.

The annual IFBA Top to Top Conference is being held this year at an exciting new venue. The event allows manufacturers to network with brokers from all across North America. Each year, top national and regional brands fill their daily schedule with B2B broker/manufacturer supplier meetings and network with other brokers and manufacturers at evening social receptions. This year, NARMS has arranged for more meeting space to be available to conference participants. This is also a chance to gain market perspectives from industry leaders such as the Keynote address being delivered this year by Dr. Brian Harris, the “Father of Category Management.” Another added bonus for manufacturer and suppliers will be the Manufacturer Share Group Session, Tuesday, May 18 from 1-4 p.m. We encourage one representative per manufacturing company attend this idea/issue-sharing conversation.

meetingThe increased emphasis on shopper marketing along with a sharper focus on ROI from trade promotion and customer marketing initiatives has created an even greater need for flawless in-store execution. The StratConn Retail Execution Resources event will showcase a range of both manpower and technology solutions for staffing, managing and reporting results at retail. Key retailer and brand manufacturer executives with responsibility for retail operations and the execution of in-store merchandising – displays, new items, shelf re-sets, fixture installations – will have a unique opportunity to discover new resources to help achieve their objectives. This is a series of pre-arranged face-to-face meetings with qualified buyers who are in the market for your services.

IFBA Top to Top and StratConn are just two more ways that your trade association is working to help you gain and strengthen your customer relationships. We encourage you to consider attending these events.

Spieckerman Reviews NARMS Conference

April 26, 2010 by Newsfeed Editor  
Filed under News Finds

Carol Spieckerman of newmarketbuilders writes about her time at the 15th Annual NARMS Spring Conference.

I can’t imagine a better time for retailers, suppliers and retail marketing services firms to convene … Retailers’ in-store focus has snapped to attention, suppliers are wrestling with unprecedented disruption, and NARM’s member companies, whether they work in event marketing, assisted selling, training, merchandising, or demos, sit right smack in the middle of the action between both.

I’ve tied together my observations from the conference and the many sidebars that I had with attendees and presenters regarding the state of the industries (retail and marketing services).

Read the rest of her insights on her blog.

Video - Spieckerman Interview at NARMS Conference

April 19, 2010 by Newsfeed Editor  
Filed under News Finds

Mark Hunter interviews Carol Spieckerman at the 15th Annual Narms Spring Conference at Saddlebrook Resort in Tampa, Florida on April 19, 2010.

HP’s Woodbury Joins Connection Forum

March 22, 2010 by Newsfeed Editor  
Filed under News Finds

Loren Woodbury of HP is the latest participant in the NARMS Manufacturer-Retailer Connection Forum scheduled for Monday, April 19th at NARMS Spring Conference. Others include: Kelly Hampton of 20th Century Fox Entertainment; Joe Wood of Roundy’s Supermarkets; Mary Jo Bastuba of Nintendo and Kelly Baker of Tetter’s Floral.

Get Ready for the Reset! Brand Proportion Distortion

March 8, 2010 by Newsfeed Editor  
Filed under News Finds

This week, I blogged about how rationalization at retail is affecting the licensing community and brand owners/licensors in particular. Writing the post, I was reminded of how retailer and supplier brand portfolios are expanding and contracting as an outcome of rationalization and how this is changing the game for retail marketing service organizations.

A funny thing has happened as retailers “optimize” their brand portfolios and cut back on the number of brands that they carry – the brands that remain look larger than life, even as the actual number of products gets reduced through SKU rationalization. Taking in the vast brand-blocked presentations and lifestyle brand displays that are sprinkled liberally throughout a given store, it doesn’t take long for visions of continuity programs to start dancing in your head . . . but who has the most skin in the game to ensure that these brands succeed? The changing answers to that question will point you to your best customers and the bigger their portfolios, the bigger your opportunities!

I’ll be taking on the impact of rationalization on brand ownership and other retail realities that are rocking the world of retail in my presentation at the NARMS Spring Conference. I’ll see you at 9:00 a.m. on Monday, April 19th!

(Carol Spieckerman of newmarketbuilders is a guest blogger and is on the agenda for NARMS Spring Conference, April 17-20, Saddlebrook Resort, Tampa, FL.)

IRI Report Takes Last Look at Last Year

February 24, 2010 by Editor  
Filed under Top Shelf

ttfeb10The recession hit hard and hit fast. This caused consumers to react quickly with devastating results on many brand marketers. As the economy slowly recovers and as energy costs now afford consumers a little more latitude in their shopping habits, the new retail reality is starting to take shape. In its February Times & Trends Report, Information Resources, Inc. (IRI) differentiates between behaviors that were a knee-jerk reaction and those that resulted in new, medium to long-term trends. As suppliers of world-class at-retail merchandising and marketing services, we can’t help but pay attention to these observations.

The IRI report tells us that 40 of the top 100 CPG categories have experienced price increases since 2009. It seems as if the battle for manufacturers and retailers will be to bring the definition of value beyond that of price. Value extends to a lot of factors, but one of the most basic is the ability to be in-stock and for new items to reach the market quickly. In fact, the NARMS Spring Conference on April 17-20 in Tampa will be a great opportunity to hear the challenges directly from the mouths of trading partners during the Manufacturer/Retailer Connection Forum.

Another IRI observation is that consumers turned to doing more things like meals, health and beauty treatments by themselves in their homes last year. This caused a rush of new product trials and the eventual discovery that consumers could achieve, “90 percent of the quality for 20 percent of the cost.” This happening could open up many new opportunities for brands, retailers and service companies alike.

Finally, it has been reported often that private label has made great gains and that the rise of quality will help store brands maintain and gain market share. This causes need on both sides. Through their popularity, store brands become household names and grow into the same challenges as their nationally marketed counter parts. Name brands must defend their turf by executing to near perfection in all marketing disciplines of which at-retail merchandising and marketing is far from the least. After all, if it’s not on the shelf, it’s not for sale.

If you have not already done so, you can download the February issue of Times & Trends here. We thank IRI for continuing to share their insights with us.

Video: Spieckerman Promotes Session at Spring Conference

February 15, 2010 by Newsfeed Editor  
Filed under News Finds

Carol Spieckerman promotes her upcoming session, “Are you Ready for the Reset? Three Revelations that Will Rock Your Retail Reality.” on Monday, April 19 at the 2010 NARMS Spring Conference. Spieckerman will also facilitate the Manufacturer/Retailer Connection sessions which will run from 10:00 AM until 12:30 PM.

Visit the conference center here.

Connection Session to Include Spieckerman

February 12, 2010 by Newsfeed Editor  
Filed under Friday Focus

carol-headshotThe NARMS Manufacturer-Retailer Connection Forum is taking shape with the recent announcement that Carol Spieckerman of newmarketbuilders will participate. The Connection Forum will happen on Monday, April 19th as part of the NARMS Spring Conference scheduled for April 17-20th at the Saddle Brook Resort in Wesley Chapel, FL. Spieckerman will start the event at 9:00 AM with - Are you Ready for the “Reset? Three Revelations that Will Rock Your Retail Reality – and then will stay on to facilitate the Connection sessions which will run from 10:00 AM until 12:30 PM.

Spieckerman is president of newmarketbuilders and serves as a strategic out-of-enterprise resource to the retail industry for product, brand and marketing campaign launches, and retail best practices. She possesses a unique understanding of macro retail trends and how marketers can translate them into relevant and actionable strategies that resonate with retailers. Spieckerman is a speaker, author and regular contributor to the Wall Street Journal, Fortune, Women’s Wear Daily, DSN Retailing Today, Home Channel News, and other national and international media outlets.

The addition of Spieckerman only strengthens what promises to be an exciting and enlightening day. The blue ribbon group of presenters that will participate in the 30 minute Q&A sessions include Kelly Hampton of 20th Century Fox Entertainment, Joe Wood of Roundy’s Supermarkets and Mary Jo Bastuba of Nintendo. Todd Jones, President of Publix will close out the connection theme for the day with an hour long presentation at 4:00 PM.

If you have not already done so, visit the conference center at for more information and to register. The agenda includes not only the Monday Manufacturer and Retailer Connection session, but a whole slate of business building education and networking activities sure to make this a memorable NARMS Spring Conference. 372NARMS2010


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