My notes. Any errors are my own.
Sales Force of the Future
By Ashik Bhat, Labatt Breweries of Canada
- The goal is for 80% of the plan to be perfect and then move at 100% speed
- In the beer industry, any brand can replace another brand. You need your brand to be irreplaceable.
- You need to understand the role your brand plays in consumers’ lives.
- How do you become indispensable? Understand retailer challenges and partner with them to meet those needs. Understand consumer challenges with the beer category. Understand the sales team’s challenges.
- Retailers: Retailers want to drive traffic or put more people in the seats.Alternatively, have people buy a more expensive product.
- Consumers: Beer category is cluttered and disorganized. We must help consumers navigate this category. We need to make the choice easy. We need to educate people about beer, pairings, history without adding time to their day.
- Sales team: They need to be more efficient. They need insights created in a customized way for their hyper-location, their market.
- Using AI to drive account level assortment insights. Used stats can data, transactional data, sales output data, correlated with hyper-local geography. This data is updated weekly with new sales data. This helped retailers optimize their SKU and brand assortment which drives volume and incrementality. They can trade brands in or out appropriate. It also drives traffic. Ensures the right brands are listed in the right places – premium beers in the right places, light beers in the right places. And, this saved time. Data is fast, efficient, and relevant.
- Sales grew 0.5% in a flat business and net promoter score is 9.3.
- In other example, the retailers struggled to convert traffic into basket building. Conducted shop-alongs and learned navigation was a problem. Pricing wasn’t clear. Products were ordered by SKU or type, not brand. As a result, they implemented brand blocking. Also, people wanted cold beer but they didn’t want to enter a cold room. This problem was fixed with refrigeration. Finally, they ensured prices were clear fro every product. They added a blackboard that was colour coded with information about the beer so people were more knowledgeable.
- Drove punches 8% and premium segment grew 1.7%. Shopping experience improved 50%.
- Be business leaders, not just consumer experts.
- Think about the customer AND the consumer: the retailer/store and the consumer. Both have challenges to face and solve.
- Democratize data and insights so they are easily digestible. 15 graphs are not digestible. Be a story teller, not a data described.
- Push past delivering research and focus on driving action through insights and data.
One Home Depot: One Team, One Dream by Andrew Go, Home Depot
- Aspiration is to be number one and most trusted home renovation store in the world.
- People regularly shop on the website first before going to the store. The website is not for e-commerce, but rather the first part of the customer journey, to inform customers about what they might need to buy.
- Analytics begin with raw unprocessed data, then structuring data into reporting, then contextualizing information to support insights, then tools to apply those insights.
- Used three years of data to conducting basket analysis. Created a self-serve dashboard and insights were applied to assortment planning, planogramming, and marketing. Then recommendation algorithms. This allows you to stitch together all different aspects of the shopping journey into the holistic unified journey. Being PIPEDA compliant all the way.
- This allows product classifications, supports anomaly detection, and supports competitive pricing. Need to make real time decisions to detect pricing errors, underpriced items, and overpriced items.
- The data helps with onsite search. The website needs to learn the names used by consumers not names used by industry experts. It also helps with product rankings – filters need to be appropriate for category, for customer preferences. Need to take price and speed off the consideration set in the fulfillment process.
- Marketing messaging also benefits. If they know you’ve bought a BBQ, they can offer BBQ covers or tools rather than promoting another BBQ.
- Set up cues based on geography and weather – e.g., snow blowers need to be advertised in fall not in the middle of winter.
- There are new data sources everyday that need to be unlocked.
- Start with the “Why.” Focus on insights, solving problems for customers. Be sure to collaborate and avoid silos.