May 19, 2020

5 reasons why trade marketing matters for small businesses

Marketing for SMEs
customer relations
Trade marketing
3 min
5 reasons why trade marketing matters for small businesses

Trade marketing is an often misunderstood and misapplied marketing strategy.

There are many types of marketing, but few marketing disciplines are as misunderstood and misapplied as trade marketing.

Which is strange, since it’s incredibly important for a company to have a fully functional trade marketing strategy.

Let me explain why…

Reason 1: The customer is always right.

Trade marketing has a lot in common with shopper marketing.

Ultimately, people usually need an incentive to buy something. That may be in the form of a discount or a 2-for-1 offer, but it might be subtler than that.

Product packaging, branding and positioning can influence consumers, too.

These more psychological marketing ideas are more commonly associated with shopper marketing, but businesses are beginning to combine multiple concepts.

In other words, they won’t just instruct an employee to create marketing collateral for the trade. Instead, they’ll be asked to create something that works for the public too.

Trade marketing campaigns that convince retailers will most likely work on consumers too, so why not killer two birds with one stone?

Reason 2: Competition in product-based markets is insanely tough.

Creating a product is one thing; creating one that sells is quite another.

Competition is rife in almost every industry. To make matters worse, because of mergers, the number of retailers that manufacturers can approach is shrinking.

That puts huge pressure on the campaigns that do get delivered.

Small businesses must become good at marketing or they won’t stand a chance of succeeding in a retail environment.

Trade marketing covers the marketing essentials, such as market research, branding and collaboration. This can only be a good thing.

Reason 3: Relationships are key.

Whether we’re talking about B2B, B2C or B2P marketing, one thing remains the same:

People buy from people.

I think that sometimes gets forgotten. Businesses who execute trade marketing campaigns are often extremely good at establishing and maintaining relationships.

It’s born out of necessity. Manufacturers have to be on good terms with their clients. They need wholesalers and distributors to gobble up their offers, plus they require retailers to believe in one product over a rival’s.

I guess it’s a mindset thing. No matter what a company is selling, it needs to create a relationship with someone, either a distributer, wholesaler, retailer… or customer.

Reason 4: Knowledge is power.

Good trade marketers don’t just know their product well, but they also understand their market inside out.

The reality is, data plays a huge part in the success of any marketing plan. No matter what your niche, consider how market research would benefit the growth of your business.

Statistics can reveal who your target audience is and what they actually crave. Data helps marketers create laser-targeted messaging. It can also help shape products, of course.

Perhaps that USP isn’t quite as attractive as you thought. Could your product proposition do with refining?

Or maybe if you understood shopper behavior a little more accurately, you’d be able to come up with that killer tagline.

Regardless, trade marketing will fill in the blanks.

Reason 5: Trade marketing can be digital, too.

The idea that trade marketing is limited to promoting a product at a trade show is a popular misconception.

Yes, manufacturers should market their goods at trade shows, but that’s just one aspect of trade marketing.

There are many other ways to connect and engage with wholesalers, distributers and retailers… and these days, you can do it digitally, too.

Business have an army of marketing weapons at their disposal, such as email newsletters, social media, content marketing and SEO.

Marketing has never been so easy, regardless of what’s being marketing and why.

Embrace trade marketing and you could transform your marketing ROI.

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Jun 23, 2021

Expo 2020: SAP Ariba to Digitise and Automate Procurement

3 min
SAP Ariba solutions will digitise and automate procurement processes for more than 25,000 Expo 2020 Dubai suppliers

Expo 2020, a World Expo that is set to be hosted by Dubai in the United Arab Emirates (UAE), was originally scheduled to run from 20th October 2020 until 10th April 2021, but, as with just about everything in the world of supply chain, the COVID-19 pandemic forced event organisers to postpone the highly-anticipated get-together. The new date for the Expo, which will be hosted in the Dubai Exhibition Centre, spanning across a 438-hectare space, is Friday 1st October, until 31st March 2022. But, there will be limitations to who can and cannot attend the event, so SAP has stepped in to fix the problem. 


What is Expo 2020?

‘Expo 2020 and SAP have run a series of onboarding summits for Expo’s valued supply chain network. As Expo’s procurement needs shift from construction to interior fit-outs, facilities management and technology services, Expo 2020 and SAP will continue to provide ongoing one-on-one support, including a dedicated helpdesk, to guide suppliers throughout the evolution to digital transactions and processes.


Expo 2020 Dubai, which will open its doors to the world from 1st October 2021 to 31st March 2022, is the first World Expo and only the second mega-event to secure a Procurement Excellence Award from the Chartered Institute of Procurement & Supply.’


SAP Ariba’s Solution

In a recent announcement, it was told that more than 25,000 of Expo 2020 Dubai’s local and global suppliers would benefit from a real-time, unified digital procurement and payment platform, thanks to technology provided by SAP, the events Innovative Enterprise Software Partner. 


The solution, provided by SAP Ariba, will supposedly fully digitise and automate the procure-to-pay lifecycle, providing a streamlined digital experience for Expo 2020’s suppliers while simultaneously enhancing transparency and efficiency across the event’s global supply chain. ‘The global technology company’s cloud-based SAP Ariba procurement solutions run on its UAE public cloud data centre and connect to Ariba Network enabling buyers and suppliers to connect and transact’, according to SAP


Mohammed AlHashmi, Chief Technology Officer, Expo 2020 Dubai, said: ‘Expo 2020 is a long-term investment in the future that aims to enhance opportunities for sustainable business connectivity and growth in both domestic and international economies. Our partnership with SAP is an example of what can be achieved with the invaluable support of our technology partners to host one of the most digitally advanced World Expos ever. The implementation of SAP Ariba solutions has transformed our end-to-end procure-to-pay cycle and helped set new standards of procurement automation for projects of this scale.’


Through SAP Ariba’s collaborative and mobile-friendly platform, any registered suppliers at Expo 2020 will be able to participate in sourcing events and the negotiation and signing of contracts; users will also be able to submit invoices and track payments in real-time. According to the platform, Expo 2020 has already transacted in excess of AED 1 billion on the platform, ‘highlighting its commitment to driving long-term business growth in the region and beyond, with a particular focus on small and medium enterprises (SMEs).’


Claudio Muruzabal, President of EMEA South, SAP, said: ‘Expo 2020 Dubai is demonstrating global best practices in digitising its procurement process with SAP Ariba solutions to help gain visibility into its spend, tighten collaboration with its suppliers, and achieve process automation, including completely paperless invoicing. Expo 2020 has already brought more than AED 1 billion in spend under management with SAP Ariba solutions.’


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