May 05, 2017

2017 Sweets & Snacks Expo Preview – Off-Shelf Merchandising and POP Insights

This month, thousands of candy and snack professionals from around the world will be in Chicago for the National Confectioners Association’s 2017 Sweets & Snacks Expo.
It’s the 20th anniversary for the event, which features innovations in the snacks and sweets market as well as guidance and direction from industry experts.
Among the leaders offering advice this year will be Menasha’s Director of Marketing, Jill Andersen. She will deliver a presentation on the second day of the expo (May 24th) explaining how sales of candy and snacks are directly proportional to the ways shoppers encounter the merchandise on the path to purchase.
Andersen gave us a preview of the topics she’ll be covering and offered just a few of the retail merchandising insights that will be part of her presentation.

The More Things Change …

Technology is certainly making an impact on the retail shopping experience, and it is altering both shopper  behavior and merchandising performance expectations. Still, Andersen knows brick-and-mortar remains relevant.
“Retail is not dead,” she maintains. “And, in-store marketing continues to demand a central position within the path to purchase.” Andersen adds that what’s needed now is a cohesive plan that connects omni-channel marketing efforts with the physical in store.  

Andersen’s presentation will examine recent trends related to snacks and candy merchandising.
Topics will include:
  • Where brands are allocating shopper marketing spend
  • Insights from in-store
  • Compliance and effective measurement tactics
  • Customization strategies for retail displays

One customization trend Andersen points out is the localization of in-store displays. That could include the concept of featuring sports teams, local landmarks, or traditions that are unique to a region.
“Brands and retailers need to think about how to specifically target shoppers in the communities that surround the store with localized displays,” Andersen explains. “We’ll look at how that drives complexities within logistics and how you can optimize localized customization efforts.”

“Best-in-Class” Retail Displays

Expect to see impressive examples of retail merchandising success. Andersen will present some of the most innovative displays and campaigns involving candy and snacks from recent promotional periods. You’ll see how brands partnered with retailers to create a sales lift during the 2016 holiday season and 2017 Easter shopping period.
Special events and holidays are prime time for candy and snacks. However, there are many ways to boost sales in between those promotional periods. One of the most effective strategies is identifying adjacencies. This involves where in the store your retail displays are placed and what they are placed near. When sweets and snacks are adjacent to complementary products such as movies, certain beverages, or other related products, shoppers tend to take notice.
It could be chocolate bars near graham crackers and marshmallows, or boxed candy near the bargain DVD bin. Adjacencies help enhance the consumer’s shopping experience and often create an emotional connection to the merchandise by associating it with positive memories.
Andersen believes brands and retailers need to work together to identify effective adjacency strategies.
“Collaboration between brands and retailers is really important for driving promotional sales,” she says. “Brands can make suggestions and retailers can make requests, but the most successful efforts occur when the brand and retailer are collaborating.”
What you’ll learn during this presentation at the 2017 Sweets & Snacks Expo in Chicago will open your eyes to the many ways retail merchandising can make a noticeable difference, because impulse buys happen in places besides the checkout line.
“Candy and snacks are definitely an impulse category,” Andersen says. “Being able to distrupt a shopper’s path within the store using the right merchandising strategies can drive those impulse purchases and increase the basket size.”
Sweets & Snacks Expo Presentation Details:
Title: Off-Shelf Merchandising and POP: Best in Class for Candy and Snacks
Who: Jill Andersen, Menasha Packaging Director of Marketing
When: Wednesday, May 24th, 2 - 2:30 pm
Where: Discovery Theater, Skyline Hall
Don’t forget to make room in your schedule to attend this event while visiting the expo. You can also view the full Education Schedule to find other speakers and presentations.
Learn more about the specialized off-shelf merchandising and POP display services Menasha provides when you visit our Retail Merchandising Solutions page.
Contact Menasha today to discover how we can be a valuable partner to your organization.