Trade Marketing Insights

January’s Trade Marketing News and Tech Round-Up

Posted by Callum Hornigold on 30-Jan-2019 14:16:33
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It's the new year and with it brings hope, resolutions and revolution.

In this trade marketing news and technology round-up:

2019 will be a year of innovation within the retail sector, as bricks-and-mortar stores try to survive the 'Retail Apocalypse' that's seeing stores close at a rapid rate.

This calls upon brands and trade marketers to start considering digital trade marketing strategies as many manufacturers begin spreading their focus across bricks-and-mortar and online stores.

As the high street continues to struggle, trade marketing professionals must up their game when it comes to choosing the right store locations and promotions, improving in-store experience and having detailed customer insights. We take a look at some of the product placement strategies and promotions which are leading the way.

In January, trade marketers also seeked to capitalise on the willful intentions of consumers as they entered into the new year. This opened the doors for new sugar-free product lines and seasonal promotions aimed at driving away the January blues and encouraging a healthier lifestyle.

While many are lamenting over the glory days of the high street, online retail is also not without its challenges. As the popularity of voice search increases in 2019, brands aim to solve one of online's biggest puzzles: Getting their products into the hands of consumers before they buy. Could the likes of Amazon be crafting a solution?

And finally, where would 2019 be without its latest technological developments? Skincare brands are using science to launch highly personalised products, drones are now delivering outside of China and retail is using gamification and VR to train employees. These are all signs of things to come as 2019 is shaping up to be a very exciting year.

Read on as we explore January's trade marketing news and technology highlights.

Consumer trends


January is a time for resolutions. Consumers are planning to cut back their spending this year, cutting down on sugary treats as their top priority to save cash, according to the latest research from Paymentsense. 


With consumers becoming increasingly focused on well-being, Trebor has launched sugar-free Cool Drops and Burton’s has rolled out its sugar-free Maryland Cookies to capitalise on healthy new year's resolutions.

Digital trade marketing

One of the biggest challenges of online retail is getting your product into the hands of consumers before they buy it. Amazon’s new ad strategy involves sending free samples to consumers based on data it has about their buying habits. Amazon is betting the sample strategy is something its biggest competitors, Google and Facebook, can't match.

Surviving challenges in retail

Merchandising and in-store experience
Nike may have a gargantuan budget to spend. Regardless, the brand is leading the way when it comes to in-store experience. From interactive basketball courts to custom sports mannequins in mid-action with scannable QR codes, Ian Scott takes a look at some of the brands most innovative merchandising. 
From shelf-stacking robots to AI fashion assistants, technology is changing how we shop and breaking down the walls between the virtual and the real world. Nike is utilising geo-fenced promotions on people’s phones to drive football. Alibaba is working on personalised clothing for all body types. And Walmart is using facial recognition to improve in-store experience. Amit Katwala digs deeper into the latest retail technology these mega brands and retailers are using.
Listen to your store managers!
HMV, the once formidable music and movie retailer, could soon disappear from the high street. But Waterstones, which HMV used to own, goes from strength to strength. Can HMV learn from the success of Waterstones, letting store managers make more decisions to react to their own communities and build up a local following?
Zara spends just 0.3 percent of sales on advertising. Here’s how the fashion brand is thriving when others fall by capitalising on customer feedback to inform continuous design development, employing expert store managers, selecting prime store locations, pushing out strong social media content and working with the right influencers.
In this insightful article by Andy Mulcahy and Andrew Starkey, they provide possible solutions for bricks-and-mortar stores desperate to survive the current retail apocalypse.
Are your product’s features and benefits enough to differentiate in a world of digital disruption, or do brands now need a higher purpose? Jennifer Zimmerman explains the death of differentiation and how to overcome "the parity plague".
According to’s John McCarthy, brand purpose can reach "Disunited Kingdom" betrayed over BrexitHow can your brand unite consumers in these divided times?

Trade Marketing Technology

Placement and segmentation

Danone Water’s Customer Development Manager is mastering segmentation and placement by utilising software that optimises distribution routes and helps to understand footfall traffic of people passing by potential store locations.
Is this new skincare line the future of beauty? Skinsei is a new skincare monthly subscription service from beauty behemoth Unilver, and it’s taking personalisation to a whole new level.
The drones are coming! completes first drone delivery outside of China.
Sales staff training
Walmart employees are now being trained with a video game. Could this open the door for better product training on key account managers and sales staff?


Pastry brand, Wall’s, has launched a nationwide campaign which will see it give away a share of £5,000 to help support community clubs. Community groups across the UK must register online at, which allows Wall’s customers, club members, as well as their friends and families to collect points by purchasing Wall’s Pastry products and uploading a picture of their receipt or product barcode.
Mondelez International has launched an on-pack promotion across its Oreo brand, in partnership with Snapchat. Consumers must use Snapchat to scan a code on promotional Oreo packs, which takes them to an online game they must complete to be in with a chance of winning one of thousands of prizes.
Quaker Oats is launching an on-pack promotion in partnership with Nuffield Health, in a move designed to support retailers in driving post-Christmas sales of cereal. The promotion offers a free Nuffield Health day pass with every pack, as well as the chance for 70 shoppers to win instantly a health and wellbeing package from Nuffield Health worth £1,000. Consumers will need to go to and enter a code found on promotional packs to see if they have won.
Nestlé Confectionery is running a well-timed on-pack competition across its KitKat portfolio, offering consumers the chance to win holidays to “exotic destinations” and “beat the January blues”.
Ferrero is rolling out seven new toys in its Kinder Surprise range as part of the company’s partnership with Minions. 
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Topics: trade marketing, trade marketing news

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