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Private Brand Strategy Starts With Knowing Your Customer, Speaker Says

June 8, 2012
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It’s important to understand the lifestyles of those your serve and how they view themselves, Sam Mayberry, vice president, private brands at Eden Prairie, Minn.-based Supervalu told attendees during his keynote address Thursday at PLBuyer’s conference, Private Label: The Next Generation, at the Hilton Chicago.

One way to do that, Mayberry suggests, is to adapt flavor profiles and make them regionally accurate.

“You really have to cater to your local shoppers,” he says.

Innovation is another key to a retailer’s private brand strategy, Mayberry says.

“I think private brands have stalled out because the last few years we’ve been so focused on the value part of it that we forget to innovate at the level that we need to. It’s all about getting out there with new items and new tastes and new profiles. You have to be willing to pull the plug on a brand if it’s not working and reformulate it. That’s the idea behind brand architecture.”

In the industry, often times we talk about how we have to grow at the expense of national brands, Mayberry says.

“I think that we need to collaborate with everyone that can help get our products and brands off the shelves and into the hands of consumers. I think there’s some iconic brands within the national brands that we need to embrace when it comes to our merchandising plan. Our marshmallows do great when they’re next to the Hershey’s chocolate bars.”

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