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Catalina seeks to improve new product success rates

BY Michael Johnsen

Catalina, a firm specialized in shopper intelligence and personalized engagement, on Tuesday announced the introduction of Catalina New Product Accelerator, a solution that gives brands the ability to predict, track and accelerate sales performance across a scaled network of national retailers.

“During the first three to six months of a launch, marketers are flying blind when it comes to meaningful insights into how new products are performing. They have no way to make smart, data-driven decisions that can improve results,” Jennifer Burke, president established brands for Catalina, said. “Our New Product Accelerator is a brand’s best asset in increasing new product launch success by providing actionable intelligence from day one.”

The new offering debuted at the Food Marketing Institute’s Midwinter Executive Conference. Catalina’s New Product Accelerator increases the success rate of new product launches with an end-to-end solution combining real-time forecasts of new product sales potential, real-time reporting of actual sales results and the ability to efficiently target and activate shoppers with omnichannel media to accelerate sales performance.

“Studies show that only 2% of new products achieve sales of more than $50 million in year one,” Burke said.  “The Catalina New Product Accelerator leverages our shopper intelligence, scaled real-time data, and optimized media activation to fundamentally change the way brands address the challenges of launching new products.”

Catalina developed this solution to give brands unmatched pre-and post-launch performance insights and control over shopper engagement to drive sales, given that an estimated 85% of new product launches fail within the first year, the firm stated.

Based on the analysis of more than 15,000 previous new product launch campaigns, Catalina New Product Accelerator provides marketers visibility to understand buyer profiles and view the behaviors that are driving sales, track distribution and consumption, predict full-year performance results and enable the activation of course-correcting media to ignite sales with the right shoppers.

Working with New Product Accelerator, brands benefit from Catalina’s proprietary algorithms to predict and precisely target marketing campaigns to drive trial and awareness with the right consumers. It then executes their campaigns as product distribution expands to new stores within Catalina’s nationwide retail network and database of 505 million shopper IDs nationwide.

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American Greetings adds warm, fuzzy love to Valentine’s Day

BY Gisselle Gaitan

American Greetings is looking to fill consumers hearts with Valentine’s Day cheer, following the unveiling of their newest collection to celebrate the holiday. The Warm Fuzzy Love collection is a keepsake and card in one, the Cleveland, Ohio-based company said.

Each heart-shaped pouch features googly eyes attached to bright, colorful fur. When the zipper on the back of the heart is opened, a silly serenade begins while a mini-card is revealed. The card is available in red, pink and purple colors and each of the three choices offers a different well-known song.

“Consumers fell in love with the Warm Fuzzy concept as gift bags and birthday cards, so we are proud to bring the furry fun and heartfelt sentiments to life for Valentine’s Day,” Carol Miller, vice president of corporate innovation at American Greetings, said. “While Valentine’s Day is predominantly a classic, romantic holiday in nature, consumers still love a good surprise!”

The Warm Fuzzy Love cards can be found in participating drug chains, grocery stores and mass retailers nationwide as well as in American Greetings and Carlton Cards retail stores.

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Own brand strategy trumps NBE, Daymon analysis finds

BY Michael Johnsen

With 81% of shoppers now buying private label products on every or almost every shopping trip, it’s no surprise that own brands are positioned to disrupt the industry.

“Private brands have entered a renaissance period that has allowed them to become more differentiated than ever before,” Jim Holbrook, CEO, Daymon, said. “We are seeing that retailers with distinctive, one-of-a-kind private brands will survive and thrive, while those with national brand equivalents will struggle as competitive pressures mount.”

The Stamford, Conn.-based retail analysis firm on Monday published its first-ever Private Brand Intelligence Report, providing a “State of the Industry” benchmark analysis on how private brands stack up against national brands based on proprietary survey data, category research from Daymon analysts and insights from experts under the Daymon umbrella.

And 2017 was a pivotal year, the report noted, as many retailers invested in their private label programs to deliver true differentiation, not just mere imitation. That may be one of the bigger reasons behind the success of Kroger’s Simple Truth, for example, which earlier this month reached a $2 billion benchmark in own brand sales.

According to the report, 85% of the 2,000 shoppers surveyed trust private brand products at least as much as national brands. Reinforcing that consumer trust in private label is the fact that store brand sales have increased by 4%, or eight times more, than national brand sales.

And expect that gap between national brand growth and private label growth to continue to expand. According to that survey, 74% of consumers believe store brands today provide the bigger bang for the buck, with 61% attesting to the improvement in quality across own brand selections. More than half, or 53% of shoppers, specifically look for a private brand option before making a purchase.

“Shoppers today are looking for ways to be disloyal,” Holbrook noted. “They aren’t interested in seeing the same thing; they are demanding better service, selection and experience.”

The most significant pocket of opportunity might be health and wellness, according to the report. It’s the fastest growing segment within private brand and in 2017 was marked as a $3.7 trillion opportunity globally.

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