Do you dream of placing your products on supermarket shelves? It’s possible! As long as you have a truly original product and accept to reduce your margins.
Large retailers like to work with SMEs to produce their brands and their ability to create innovative products and open up new markets.
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The Advantage Of The Start-Up? The Niche Product!
“Contrary to popular belief, large retailers are also interested in start-ups. At least when these offer innovative niche products that the most prominent companies do not (yet) produce, when they can produce large volumes with consistent quality, when they have teams and a strong structure and, of course, the financial capacity to withstand long payment terms and to build a solid brand.
Innovate, Innovate and … Innovate Again
Therefore, this extended range made it easier for Ice Crime Factory to convince the Category Managers of Carrefour, Spar, Match, Metro. “We must also innovate in our packaging, in our way of working as well. We want to be much more professional vis-à-vis large-scale distribution to become an even more severe company that can deliver large volumes and invest in its brand. We also want to develop communication with consumers. Indeed, it is not easy when you are an SME, and you have to fight against large multinationals. Still, thanks to the possibilities offered by the Internet and social networks, we can reach a vast, highly targeted audience at a relatively low cost. Low and also be very inventive.
Do You Also Dream Of Selling Your Products To Supermarkets?
Present An Innovative Product
Finding a place on the shelves is better to offer real innovation. The doors open more efficiently with a product still unknown in mass distribution.
Prove Your Business Potential
Have you already obtained results on other circuits? Talk it over! Is your product new to the market? Present figures show that it is part of a strong trend. Put all the assets on your side to convince. And if, like Ice Crime Factory, you won an award (Innovation of the Year in 2014), mention it also on the packaging to boost your notoriety and give your launch credibility.
Don’t be scattered! Focus on a product, a market, and a method of execution. You don’t know how to do everything. Write a well-targeted strategy and set specific goals. The extensive distribution prefers to work with an SME expert in a niche than a generalist.
The lack of professionalism does not pass with extensive distribution, and it is essential from the 1 st day of being in all that you do. When you send an email (without spelling mistakes), be creative and efficient. You have 5 seconds to convince. Have a good site, offer samples. Each slide of your presentation must be consistent …
Put Yourself In The Shoes of The Buyers.
Buyers are in high demand. Be innovative to get a 1 st appointment. Remember, they manage thousands of referrals. For you, the stake is enormous. For them, your brand is only one among thousands of others. Show that you want to work with them. And that you know where you are going. Be very clear and very marketing. Listen to them because, in general, they know (the potential of) your market better than you!
Have Perfect Control of Your Numbers
Large-scale distribution is very hard in negotiations. Expect to be hotly challenged on your prices, discounts and conditions … and sales targets. It is also impossible to escape promotional budgets (flyers, gondola head). If you offer exclusivity, negotiate a favorable location on the shelf.
Once you have agreed on the prices and quantities to be supplied, it can still take a long time to reach the shelves. Usually, this opportunity arises only once or twice a year. Between a 1 st appointment and a 1 st product placed, it can take 9 to 12 months. And to be paid, you have to add another three months.
Plan a Practical And Creative Communication Plan
Supermarkets will ask you how you will promote your product because it is a factor in accelerating sales on the shelves. Don’t come up with a plan you can’t afford, and better bet on alternative communication channels such as digital tools or events, which create emotions. And don’t forget to educate the supermarket staff well on your qualities and convince them to sell your product.
Invest In Your Brand
If you are the only one in your category, it is less critical. But when the market is growing, other brands rush into it, and then you have to have money and budget to build your brand. Consider surprising your consumer and giving them a unique experience. This will create a community of fans.
Don’t Rest On Your Laurels.
When you finish developing a new concept, don’t rest on your laurels but anticipate the next one. Constantly question yourself. Innovate with new products, new packaging, and more consistent and more professional communication. Don’t lose your pioneering advantage, as you may have to fight very quickly with competitors much more powerful than you.
Also Read: B2B sales: Business To Business