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Swimming with the sharks: Marketing keys on display

For many new-product makers, endcaps combine point of sale marketing, shelf space or floor space needed to get products into consumers’ hands.

One such vendor is Rapid Tools, a Burlington, Ontario-based cutting tools manufacturer. According to the company, endcaps, or “quarter-pallet” displays, play an integral part in merchandising its latest product, the Shark, a combination utility knife and wire stripper, which bears a striking resemblance to the underwater predator.

According to Simon Medhurst, Rapid founder and CEO, quarter pallet displays are essential to marketing a new product. “It speaks volumes to be able to separate yourself from your competitors,” he said. “You’re by yourself, you’re not being lost in a planogram.”

On one hand, quarter pallet displays help the manufacturer get new products into the stores faster, Medhurst said. On the other, they allow retailers to try out new products without having to rearrange their shelf space. For the launch of the Shark, Rapid came up with a four-sided full-color graphic, which allows the retailer more flexibility when placing the display. The 12-inch header card serves to both attract customers and inform them about the product.

For the makers of the Monkey Hook, the point-of-purchase idea involves hanging on the sides of endcaps with a display called a “side wing.”

“People were more willing to take a chance with us because they didn’t have to give us a whole end,” said David Kurrasch, founder of Monkey Hook.

Flexibility is a key advantage to the side wing, he said. The two retailers that moved the most Monkey Hooks—wire hooks designed to hang pictures on dry wall without a stud—had one thing in common. They both placed the side wings by the registers. “That’s how we found out we were an impulse item,” he said.

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