Improve Category Management with Rich Product Data Attribution

In Blog by Daniel Lohman

Guest Blogger, Daniel Lohman, is an Organic/Consumer Packaged Goods Consultant, a Certified Professional Strategic Advisor (CPSA) and industry thought leader with over 300+ published articles.

The real value in any data is its accuracy. One of the biggest challenges syndicated data providers have is keeping up with all the new item introductions in addition to any item changes manufacturers make. I’ve read articles from Dev Ganesan, CEO of ItemMaster, and recently sat down with him.  We discussed ItemMaster’s current capabilities as well as their future plans. Fragmented product content that exists across the sales funnel and across the organization in different silos is a primary pain-point they are working to solve.

Where did this problem come from?

I spent a good part of my career working for some of the largest CPG companies in the industry and fixing database issues for all of the syndicated data providers. At this point, the industry only looked at basic item segmentation, but my focus was:

  • Accurate coding of new items in their database
  • Properly categorizing and segmenting items.

Changes in consumer purchasing behavior changed our industry

Shoppers want what they want and if they can’t find their favorite products at their local retailer they have myriad of choices including online retailers. Shoppers won’t settle. Their attitude forces retailers and brands to rethink their product innovation, merchandising and marketing strategies.

Category Management needs good data

My clients are disruptive natural organic brands creating new categories and product segments. This experience has shown the strength of any category management project lies in the quality of the data and the ability for the category manager to tease out actionable insights to drive profitable and sustainable brand and category growth. In the absence of rich product attribution, traditional category management strategies tend to overlook the key product attributes that appeal to health-focused shoppers. I spend a lot of time cleaning the data up before I begin working on any client projects.

Buyer interactions driven by content

One of the biggest challenges all brands face is a lack of consistent robust content across their entire eco-system. Confusing and inconsistent messaging is a key factor in cart abandonment and lost sales. One example of ItemMaster’s commitment to making the shopper journey easier is their recently released WellnessMaster™, a tool that helps shoppers easily choose and identify the meal solutions that align with their dietary and wellbeing wants and needs. Consumers are demanding even more information about the products they buy and there is limited real-estate on package.  Enriched or derived attributes can provide higher-order attributes that supplement those on the nutrition fact panel or ingredient list. Making it easy for consumers to find your products should be every category managers’ primary objective. Partners like ItemMaster, make it possible.