Category Management

Category Management:
Delivering Growth Opportunities

Whilst others settle for Category Management, at Big River Solutions we drive for Category Development

Our belief is that Category Development delivers more, and has a greater effect than just taking the purely historical view produced by Category Management. We acknowledge that a review of the past has a part to play in creating a level of retrospective understanding. However, predicting and anticipating the trends that are approaching allow us to help you ensure that your category retains its relevance. Aligning expectation to market conditions, which are shaped by the customer, shopper, consumer and the environment, allows clients to identify new opportunities, including NPD, brand extension opportunities, and shopper marketing.

Category Management has a long-established reputation for optimising a category’s performance, but this is no longer enough. Category Development is an evolution that moves on from analysis of the past, to embrace the impact of future lifestyles and trends.

We have a proven track record in creating Category Development solutions that become an everyday habit, with everyone in an organisation having a part to play.

At Big River Solutions, our expertise is a result of 25 years in the field. We have developed some of the most creative and pragmatic Category Development solutions in today’s market. We have experience of being involved in all the major review processes and have done the job from the bottom up.

This is a selection of the areas we can assist you in:

  • Creating Category Visions
  • Creating action orientated category plans/category strategies
  • Creating Point of Purchase Vision, strategies and tactics
  • Assessing current capabilities and design a roadmap for future improvement
  • Conducting market reviews
  • Conducting range reviews and supporting with planogram resource
  • Creating a channel based Look of Success
  • Assist in annual planning
  • Training category based selling skills
  • Training or creating compelling retailer selling stories
  • Training Category Development skills – from basic to practitioner
  • Designing your approach to Category Development, embed it and make it live
  • Supporting “insights creation” via shopper research/ongoing analytics
  • Training Insight Creation
  • Create and embed a category team, recruit and put in place processes and tools
  • Embed Category Management in your organisation
  • Up-skill you team through coaching, mentoring or onsite support
  • Review organisation design and alignment
  • Resource the team (via interim or search)
  • Reviewing current insight provision.

Creating a Capability Framework

A major part of what makes your business unique are its capabilities.  They define your customers’ value and they distinguish you from your competitive set. If you are able to offer something that is unique, your customers will choose you to help them develop the category in their business. A capability framework is an important […]

Choice overload in category management – less is more

You’ve heard the saying less is more, never has this been truer than when deciding on the size of a range and the choice available to the shopper. For most companies this is counter-intuitive, believing that a large range will mean that they will achieve more sales, but research has proven that this is not […]

Category Vision: Keeping it Relevant

How can one phrase mean so many different things to different people? What’s the phrase? Well, it is that much-bandied phrase Category Vision. Recently we were approached by a client and asked to submit a proposal for a category vision project. Our proposal confirmed that the project required a consolidation of trends from a consumer, […]

It’s not all one way traffic – A collaborative thought piece By Big River Solutions & Shoppercentric

This article ‘one-way traffic…’first appeared in Essential Retail 12/10/2017 In a recent Mintel report, online grocery sales were predicted to be worth £11.1 billion in the UK in 2017, which will be an increase of £1.1 billion on the previous year. Other data shows that the proportion of shoppers buying most or all of their groceries online […]

Rebalancing Category Management and Shopper Marketing

Over the last few years everything has become focused on ‘the now’, with little long term planning or priority given to longer term projects. Over time, resources (people and money) have moved from category growth initiatives that require time (category development) to short term tactical shopper marketing that delivers immediate return. The concept of ‘grow […]

Rebalancing Category Management and Shopper Marketing – Part 1 – Category Development the blue box

In the first article in our series, we consider the blue sector, which is Category Development. To quote Henry Ford – “If you always do what you’ve always done, you’ll always get what you’ve always got.” This is a quote I love and for me highlights the output from category management. To quote our website […]

Big River Solutions and Symphony GOLD Partner to Enhance CPG and Retail Business Solutions and Processes

Customers to benefit from full-spectrum category management and shopper analytics Symphony GOLD, provider of the GOLD unified software platform for omni-channel retail, and Big River Solutions, a UK-based, FMCG-focused consultancy that provides a range of category management and shopper marketing solutions for retail and CPG businesses globally, today announced their partnership. This agreement will enable both […]

Shopper Missions – A collaborative thought piece By Big River Solutions & Shoppercentric

For a long time now missions have been a core part of the category management / shopper marketing language. Identifying which missions are important in which channels, allows brands and retailers to flex their offering and target specific shoppers on key missions. But, shopping has changed considerably in recent years as channels have multiplied and […]

Rebalancing Category Management and Shopper Marketing – Part 4 – Shopper Marketing the green box

In the fourth and final article in our series, we consider the green box, which is strategic shopper marketing. Our premise is that over the last few years everything has become focused on ‘the now’, with little long term planning or priority given to longer term projects. This image identifies the four key activity areas […]

Rebalancing Category Management and Shopper Marketing – Part 3 – Price Promotions the red box

In the third article in this series, Christine Edwards MD of Big River Solutions turns the spotlight on the red box* (price promotions), which is all about what is happening ‘now’. Since we first published our diagram in August last year, it would appear that the emphasis is starting to shift away from the red […]