The one thing AI will never be able to help us with

2020-03-28T13:56:02+00:00January 13th, 2020|Views|

AI is going to change our lives – it’s going to remove so much of the mundane analysis. What’s more, it’s going to be able to predict things that previously we’d have had to figure out for ourselves. Wonderful stuff, machine learning. But don’t be fooled. There is one question AI will never answer.  It

Is this the golden rule of shopper insights?

2020-03-13T10:01:22+00:00December 9th, 2019|Views|

I am generally loath to dumb down anything into oversimplified bullet points, but I am going to make an exception today because I think this matter is so important but so ignored - it needs a little bit of extra focus! Most shopper insights are driven by suppliers seeking to "influence" retailers. We all know

Category Role. Time to update the old classics?

2020-03-13T10:09:49+00:00August 8th, 2019|Views|

Remember Step 2 of the Eight Step Process anyone? Define the Role of the Category. Well, how did that work out for you? It was an important consideration. Pointless to propose strategies that were a mismatch for what a retailer sought to achieve “top-down” with that category. In a limited space environment, tough choices need

Data Meetings. They usually don’t work well – but what’s the alternative?

2019-07-08T09:26:39+01:00June 19th, 2019|Views|

Data is the currency of modern business. Getting the right conclusions and taking action driven by data is critical to personal and collective success. But I reckon the canary has just keeled over in the coal mine. I have probably sat through or presented at over hundreds, maybe even a thousand data presentations in my

“Shopper” is for Cat Man people, not marketers, right?

2019-07-08T09:26:45+01:00June 3rd, 2019|Views|

We talk to CPG companies about shopper insights day in day out. We are used to rooms filled with “category” people, and indeed salespeople. But it's amazing how rarely brand managers come along. I think the shorthand or even subliminal implication to marketing departments is that talking shopper is about retailers, selling, more about execution,

The Five Guys story – simple learnings for shopper marketers

2019-03-06T11:53:23+00:00March 6th, 2019|Views|

It's an amazing story. The startup of a single tiny side street burger bar that became a $3 billion international company. I listened to the story told by Jerry Murrell, the founder, about the cornerstone of their success. Deceptively simple – they gave customers the best possible product. Early on he allowed his sons (who

What did 300+ USA retail buyers say made for a best practice supplier?

2019-01-31T15:20:02+00:00January 31st, 2019|Views|

Your first job with your buyer is to build a relationship as a trusted advisor. Only then will your ideas and proposals be credible. In a recent Advantage Survey of USA retail buyers in CPG, references to “objective information and advice” came only second to “good communication” in what behaviours make a best practice supplier.

Why is objective, quantitative shopper data in proposals and plans so important?

2019-01-23T15:00:32+00:00January 23rd, 2019|Views|

We may not like to think about it, but as humans, we are all subject to a range of unconscious biases. These get in the way of our rational decision making so that we often end up with worse outcomes than we should. Clear, unambiguous, quantitative data, well explained can overcome these “gut feel” problems.