Focus, Accelerate, And Invest: The Three-Step Move To Consumer Products Dominance

Don Gordon

Part 2 of the “Consumer Products and the Crossover Effect” series

The consumer products industry has enjoyed its share of change in recent years. The competitive landscape is becoming more crowded as niche startups embrace the power of e-commerce and larger brands cross over from traditionally unrelated markets. Global factors, such as generational interests, omnichannel shopping behavior, retail fragmentation, growing populations, and rising economic wealth, are putting additional pressure on the consumer products industry.

When facing a new breed of competitors that go beyond product differentiation to establish their foothold in the marketplace, consumer product companies can no longer compete on incremental innovation and promotions. Now more than ever, brands need to focus, accelerate, and invest in innovations that push the boundaries of consumer engagement and sales models.

Experimenting with competitive plays for market leadership

Increasingly, leading and rising industry players are tapping data-rich market insights to create faster, more efficient, more sustainable, and more responsive delivery mechanisms that fulfill answered consumer needs. With a finger on the pulse of purchasing behavior, emerging revenue opportunities, and potential operational and economic risks, these businesses are driving buyer confidence, long-term loyalty, and consumer satisfaction to unprecedented levels.

How are these leading consumer products companies turning an endless stream of data into a killer strategy for consumer engagement? Here are four strategies that brands are embracing to tilt the competition in their favor.

Strategy #1: Data-driven services

Markgräflich Badisches Weinhaus is shaping the future of winemaking to appease the tastes of modern-day wine connoisseurs while respecting its millennium-long tradition of maximum-quality products and unwavering compliance with regulations. This new approach offers customers an intimate experience where they can learn the history of their wine – from vine to glass. Meanwhile, viticulturists are accessing and analyzing captured data on weather and crop performance to, for example, optimize fertilization and harvest grapes under the best conditions.

By fusing heritage with technology, Markgräflich Badisches Weinhaus is finding new ways to deliver the total wine experience to its consumers. The company deployed a scalable ERP suite in the cloud, which integrated management and reports, business processes, and financials and logistics. 

Strategy #2: Personalized offers

Emmi Group is the largest milk processor in Switzerland, exporting a range of dairy products – from cream and butter to ice cream, cheese, yogurt, and milk drinks – to approximately 60 countries around the globe. With such a wide reach, the company’s top priority is engaging consumers in more personalized, digital ways.

To develop a digital consumer experience that unites various digital touchpoints, such as social channels, websites, and ERP systems, Emmi adopted an omnichannel digital marketing platform. The implementation was completed within 11 weeks, offering a distinct opportunity to create marketing campaigns independently and enrich customer profiles to ensure more effective use of its marketing budget.

Strategy #3: Direct-to-consumer engagement

Known for a portfolio of personal care brands such as Schick, Banana Boat, Playtex, and Wet Ones, Edgewell reaches 60 markets worldwide. With products that are continuously in high demand, the company needed to ensure consumers have access to the items they want, anytime and anywhere.

Adopting a next-generation, cloud-based ERP suite, Edgewell is getting the real-time visibility it needs to secure proper inventory levels and optimize the supply chain. The order management process is faster. Back-stocked and out-of-stock inventories are significantly reduced. Every touchpoint of its disparate data sources is connected. And more importantly, the company is fulfilling consumer demand with swift responsiveness, agility, and profitability.

Strategy #4: Consistent omnichannel experiences

As a leading retailer for athletic headwear and sports accessories, New Era serves customers all over the world with an enormous stock inventory of over 500 official product licenses. Taking an agile, cloud-first approach, New Era Cap Company deployed a commerce cloud solution to provide a rich, personalized, omnichannel commerce experience to its customers and retail partners.

Fitting perfectly with New Era’s agile culture, the cloud solution enabled the company to meet its ambitious five-month deadline. The system usability, implementation speed, and high-quality support services have risen the bar on customer service excellence for the company as well as the industry.

Winning consumers by putting them at the center of the business

Consumers have access to a limitless supply of choices when it comes to buying the products they need. To gain every consumer’s attention, consumer products companies must get closer to the people and organizations they serve and prove their relevance.

As Markgräflich Badisches Weinhaus, Emmi, Edgewell, and New Era Cap prove, data intelligence at the core of decision-making and strategy planning opens up rapid, flexible transformation that consistently serves the best interest of consumers and retail partners.

Get your consumer products business on a trajectory of accelerated growth without tipping off your competitors. Read our industry point of view “The Crossover Effect: Positioning Consumer Products Companies on the Growth Path.”

Follow this series by bookmarking the series landing page “Consumer Products and the Crossover Effect” and checking it next Monday for the latest insights.

About Don Gordon

Don Gordon leads global Consumer Products industry marketing for SAP. Previously he led global Retail industry marketing for IBM. He lives in Philadelphia, considered by many to be the finest city on earth.