When you have a great product, your main goal is getting into the hands of consumers. But more often than not, that requires getting on retailers’ shelves, and that is where consumer packaged goods suppliers can get stuck. Getting in front of retail buyers is no easy achievement, especially for emerging brands, but there’s good news ahead: engaging with a CPG broker can help you break through those obstacles and get on the retail shelf.
You may be asking yourself, what is a CPG broker, and what exactly do they do? Simply put, a CPG broker is someone who will handle the transaction between you and the retailer. For emerging brands, brokers can be incredibly useful, as they have the contacts and the know-how to help get brands onto shelves and handling the nitty-gritty that might otherwise stretch suppliers beyond their capabilities. Below are just some of the things that CPG brokers handle.
If you’re engaging with a CPG broker, chances are one of the main reasons you’re doing so is to tap into their established relationships with retailers. The retailer relationship is crucial for all parties involved, and a broker is often a source of key information about retailers they then share with suppliers, like trends that are impacting retailers, or sales of various products. What’s more, brokers can collaborate with retailers for events like in-store demos that can help increase your brand awareness.
For brands, especially emerging brands, getting in with a distributor is a great step on the path to success. But distributors don’t work with one brand, and one brand only, and that’s where brokers can step in to help. Rather than the brand spending large chunks of time on building a relationship with a distributor to ensure they stay top of mind among the thousands of SKUs a distributor handles, a broker can do the leg work, and maintain and gain on distributor relationships to help boost brands. Which brings us to….
….how brokers can benefit suppliers when it comes to brand positioning. Retailers and distributors are constantly searching for new products, and who better to bring them right to their door than your broker? They have the experience (with retailers and distributors) and the information (about your brand and your company) to put the puzzle pieces together to create the big picture that will showcase your brand to its fullest potential, and have a keen understanding of how to leverage the available channels for your brand.
Market research & new product development
While brokers are handling the day-to-day management of your brand with retailers and distributors, they’re in a prime seat to see what your competition is doing and how shopper habits are changing in real-time. That insight can be used to better inform the next steps for your own brand, from packaging to line extensions, to just about every aspect of new product development. Brokers have the insider knowledge needed to help inform your next steps as well as when those steps have been executed (see brand positioning, above).
Bringing the business
A big part of a CPG broker’s job is not only getting your product on store shelves but making sure they stay there. Whether it’s building and maintaining strong relationships with retailers and distributors, or capturing the information needed to keep a brand relevant and top-of-mind for consumers, a broker is there to do the heavy, and sometimes otherwise cost-prohibitive, lifting on the sales side so brands can focus on the supply side.
The journey from a new product idea to a new product on shelf is a long and often bumpy road. Having partners along the way that can help navigate your brand to success is invaluable, and working with CPG brokers and leveraging their skillset can be a great element in a supplier’s strategy.
Explore Brokers who are ready to help grow your brand in RangeMe Services.
Broker specialties for launch
- Retailer relationship management
- Distributor relationship management
- Brand positioning
- New product development
- Market research
- Sales consulting
- Business process outsourcing