The Future of Category Management

Both CPG-branded manufacturers and their key retailers are increasingly organized within the Category Management framework, as endorsed by FMI. CPGCatNet is perhaps the most central resource for information, methodologies and training on best practices in Category Management operations. In the most recent training conferences around the globe, Dr. Brian Harris has served as the Key Note Speaker for the opening session, giving a presentation titled: "Future Trends in Category Management: Focusing on the Shopper, Execution and Organization Capabilities".

In his remarks, Dr. Harris provides a “roadmap” for organizations to follow for the continued successful use of Category Management in the years ahead. Working with FMI and GMA, the new process for Category Management will evolve toward Shopper Management based upon consumer segmentation. Both CPG- branded manufacturers and key retailer customers are moving from Category / Product focused segmentation into a more consumer-centric and shopper-centric approach to building plans to drive sales.

Current primary consumer research and shopper research is focused on “attitudes” in-store and out-of-store and provides guidance for product development and promotional developments, but little is known about these shoppers, specifically, “who”, “where” and “how much value” these shoppers represent. As such, it is very difficult to execute plans efficiently identify and target the highest value households and retail stores (trade areas) for brand and category building activities.

Manufacturers should seek company's with the ability to approach define segmentation of their customers and provide actionable segmentation solutions in this area of increasing industry practice.

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