Retailers call for more NID action

Independent retailers are urging more cash and carry and delivered wholesalers to become involved in the My Shop Is Your Shop (MSYS) campaign.

They say some – not all – wholesalers are missing a commercial trading opportunity and big brands could do more.
Interim analysis of a survey among retailers reveals that some wholesalers were not actively supportive for the last National Independents’ Day (NID) on June l.

Retailers say they also want more special big brand promotions through the year and not just for NID.

The survey is being carried out by the Federation of Wholesale Distributors. It is asking its 500 signed up Community Stars – retailers committed to the activity – to suggest improvements.
So far about one third of responses by retailers say that their main wholesaler did not brief them about the campaign or put on any special tailor-made promotional activity.

Some respondents say some wholesalers missed out on the massive national media coverage of the day – coverage of about £1.5m in equivalent advertising costs was achieved.

But many retailers have noted the support they received from their wholesaler and have asked for more of the same.

Alan Toft, chairman of MSYS, said: “We must remember it’s early days. We are only in year two. But I am certain that we will see more involvement by wholesalers in future.

“It’s my job to persuade wholesalers that MSYS is a profitable commercial activity. It’s about focusing on community marketing – giving wholesalers’ customers promotions and motivation based on the neighbourhood.

“Community marketing gives independents something that the giant satellite c-stores cannot implement.

“It means using the independents’ personal sole trader or family business interface with the local neighbourhood, meeting local needs exactly and becoming involved with the community.
“We’ve got 50 ideas on how retailers can do this. They can be adapted by wholesalers.

“The impersonal multiple c-store, where the management is driven by a distant head office just cannot do this.”
Toft said the distant multiple c-store head office would decide what its local shop managers would stock and their pricing, staff levels and promotional activity.

“The staff in these faceless multiple satellites are driven by the bonus-motivated manager to sell, sell, sell and nothing more. Independents can be far more local and community based than a multiple c-store can ever be.”

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