One Blog |September 20, 2010 | POS Tracking Software

Lowering Costs with a Managed Marketing at-Retail Solution - Part 2

Mark Fullerton

Part 2

Time (and Error Reduction) Is Money

One of the biggest advantages you will gain by using an automated, Marketing at-Retail management system is the reduction of errors that are so common when developing and printing such items as point-of-sale signage and menus.  A primary cause of these types of errors this the lack of communications between the sales and merchandising staffs and the graphics department personnel. Often these errors in communications result in delays and expensive reworks (An industry average of $45 to $60 per rework.)

With a point-of-sales (POS) software management system, the ordering and tracking processes are fully automated.  Instead of jotting down sign requests on a bar napkin or paper form, and stuffing all of the orders in the print shop in-box at the end of the day, your sales staff can transmit sign and menu orders electronically from the trade, throughout the day.  Only minimal data-entry is required on the part of the sales person because all of the sign types the customers typically request are pre-loaded into the management system.  

When sales reps enter a sign or menu request, they simply review a dropdown menu that shows the types, sizes and graphics for the signs or menus.  Only when all of the required attributes for the customer and the specific type of marketing material are entered perfectly will the system accept the order.  Then, the order is automatically transmitted to the print shop along with information about when the signs or menus are needed.

The Elimination of Errors

The ease and accuracy of this process eliminates virtually all of the time and expense of remaking signs or re-proofing menus. In many cases a managed POS software solution is completely paid for through the elimination of errors alone.

Another benefit of using an automated system to manage, control and measure your signage and menu operations is that the system enables print-shop management to direct each day’s production as effectively and efficiently as possible.  Distributors have commented that a managed system permits orders to be approved, prioritized and scheduled automatically.  Similar print jobs can be run contiguously saving time and reducing waste.

We Spent $30,000 on Banners! What Did We Get in Return?

Business Analytics have recently become one of the hottest interest areas for beverage distributors.  Today, with the growing emphasis on promotions and Marketing at-Retail initiatives as the key to growing market share, it is important to know which marketing materials are creating the greatest returns for your business. For example, if it costs you hundreds of dollars per month to produce signs or menus for a customer who only buys a few cases per month, that is probably not a good use of your valuable resources.  With a managed system you can ensure you’re spending your marketing budget serving the customers who do the most business with you.

Value for the Suppliers Too

Increasingly, suppliers are asking distributors to document sign, menu and product sample spending in order to fully participate in their bill-back or marketing allowance programs.  Without a system that includes automated ordering, tracking and reporting functions which provide proof to suppliers, that task is extremely difficult.  However, with an automated, managed system, a distributor can quickly deliver the data, saving time and paperwork, but more importantly ensuring that nothing slips through the cracks.

These Web-based systems are currently being deployed and adopted by beer, wine and spirits distributors of all sizes to address some of the most commonly expressed concerns of distributors, namely, how to reduce Marketing at-Retail expenses, increase market share, and provide tools to process, compile and file for available recovery dollars.

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