Resolution: Update my product pitch presentation

April 16, 2019By Behind the Shelf Blog, Brand Marketing, Resolutions

By Jen Johnston, CHHC, senior marketing services account manager, for the Resolutions blog series

If you aren’t selling your products into retail as quickly as you’d like, it’s time to re-evaluate your pitch to buyers. I’ve seen hundreds of presentations and plenty of problems and missed opportunities.

These problems usually stem from one common flaw — the inability of the presenter to put themselves in the retail buyer’s shoes.

Did you ever stop to think about how many product pitches a category buyer has seen during the week you present? There may have been five presentations before yours, and the buyer is getting hungry for lunch! If you are at an organized event such as an ECRM EPPS, they could see upwards of 50 buyer decks over the course of just a few days. 

After a while, the products may blend together. Is your unique selling proposition as unique as you think it is? Is your slide deck 15 pages too long? A buyer presentation that drones on and on is likely to be met with blank stares.

Do you know what the buyer’s goal is? If you think it is to fill shelves or buy product that will sell, that is only part of the story. The retail industry is going through a massive shake-up right now, and many retail chains have overarching corporate initiatives to innovate. Your category buyer may be looking to disrupt the category. How can your brand help them do that? 

Telling a humdrum features and benefits story is not going to cut it. Your product pitch deck should tell the story of the white space. Succinctly prove that your product is needed. Describe the demographic your product appeals to. How are you going to reach them? How will you send them to that retailer’s doors?presenting a pitch deck

If your product is based on innovative science, can you explain it to the buyer quickly in a way that will resonate? They are expecting you’ll be able to easily explain it to their shoppers, too.

Do you understand what the trends are in your product category? Do you understand the market size? Bonus points if you have IRi, Nielsen, SPINS, or other data to back it up.

Features and benefits are important, but what are your benefits to the retailer? Hint: phrases like “incremental sales,” “category growth driver,” and “trade-up opportunity” can really trip their trigger.

Do you have a solid placement strategy? Don’t forget to illustrate it visually through a realistic planogram vignette.

Have a buttoned up marketing plan? The retailer wants to know how much you are planning to spend and where your efforts are going to be focused during which months. If you can get down to the retailer program level, all the better. The buyer wants to know specifically how you are inspiring consumers to shop their stores.

If you’ve resolved to update your retail pitch deck, these are just a few questions to ask yourself and your team members. Remember to empathize with the buyer. Coming to the meeting prepared with a succinct and compelling product pitch presentation saves your time and theirs.