FMCG firms including Nestle and Interbrew are working with
management consultants Glendinning to develop a category management
approach to marketing.
The strategy will focus on working with retailers to build first the
category, then the brand.
In a session entitled 'Driving brands through retail' Stephen Mawby,
director of consulting at Glendinning, explained that in order to grow,
brands need to start by looking at the category vision, and then look at
the role of the brand in that category.
"Retailers do not care about brand growth, but about category growth,"
said Mawby. "However, if brands allow single retailers to dictate their
brand strategy it would become immensely complicated. So, suppliers need
to drive the agenda."
Jonathan Michelmore, category manager at Nestle, revealed that it has
been restructuring its £260m consumer food division around
category management over the past 15 months.
The new approach has included selling different sizes of the snack in
the confectionery and biscuit sections at different price points. "You
need to take the brand round the store and think about the other
occasions on which it can be used," said Mawby.
The process has also included training some of Nestle's brand marketers
to become 'internal experts' on category management.