The rapidly changing retail and consumer environment means that business who innovate will win, but are we all innovating in the right areas? Our latest series of blogs will explore this topic in relation to how brands and sales agencies can work together to drive the biggest gains.
Consumers and retailers are rapidly evolving largely driven by unparalleled choice, rising costs and the changing behaviours of the population. It’s therefore more important now that ever to keep innovation and continuous improvement at the heart of any sales businesses if they intend to Deliver ROI and value for their clients. For this blog, we sat down with our Strategy and Marketing Director Gordon Neil to explore the key environmental changes and the innovation areas they’re driving for sales businesses.
The changing environment
We can summarise the changing environment into four areas:
- Consumers are seeking experiences: Changing consumer behaviour is making it more important to create immersive experiences that engage and excite consumers.
- Retail is becoming more diverse: With consumers shopping across more channels and choice at an unparalleled level, the largest retailers are taking cost out of their business which is having an impact on store execution. In addition, turnover per outlet is falling, meaning new approaches are required to unlock ROI.
- Manufacturers are seeking more efficient value generation: Rising input costs and more diverse product portfolios, combined with legislative change are putting pressure on margins. The need for simplicity and efficiency is now the norm for manufacturers when working with sales agency partners.
- The workforce is becoming more flexible: An increasing desire for flexible working patterns and a continuing growth in gig economy, whether full time, part time or flexible (87% of employees want flexibility), means that the right people approach will enable employers to unlock high skilled flexible workforces.
What are our focus areas?
The constantly changing environment undoubtedly means that for brands to win in this space their partner sales agencies need to evolve to succeed; but where do you focus when there’s so much change? For us at McCurrach, we’ve focused on four areas:
- Be more adaptable across sectors: Sales agencies need to evolve expertise and experience across all retail channels to ensure they can support their clients to drive value in growth channels and unlock efficiency in declining channels.
- Deploy innovative technology to unlock efficiency: Agencies need to develop market leading technology that unlock efficiency and effectiveness for clients. The critical factor here is smart application of that technology versus innovation for innovations sake.
- Build more agile resourcing models: Resourcing needs to become more agile, whether permanent, seasonal or project based, in order to create more efficient ways to unlock value for clients.
- Deliver experiential propositions to excite and engage consumers: Sales agencies need to evolve their proposition to ensure they can deliver consumers experiences that engage, but also sell more.
Stay tuned in the upcoming weeks for more on how to turn this into reality as we share insight and live examples of how sales agencies like us can drive wins for brands, including how we are driving innovation in the marketplace to support clients to maximise value in the changing environment…
If you’d like to talk to us about our views and how we can support your brand please contact us.