Thought Leadership 2017-02-23T18:57:20+00:00


CMA White Papers & Articles

Thought Leadership

The BPBU constantly seeks to advance industry knowledge through insightful whitepapers and other curated materials

  • The BPBU teams’ extensive knowledge about the discipline of Category Management and Consumer and Shopper Insights allows us to provide education and unique perspectives to make you better informed and, ultimately, drive your category’s success

Case Studies

The CMA strives to emphasize the importance of hands on exercises for REAL-WORLD category management. We do this by providing case studies to help retailers, manufacturers, leaders, sales executives & marketing executives in the constantly changing category management industry.

White Papers

At the CMA, we provide the most recent and informative case studies & white papers highlighting sections of the industry like category management, insights and analytics, shopper marketing & space management.

CMA White Papers

How Vendors Allocate Marketing Dollars

This paper addresses at a high level some of marketing’s most intriguing issues: How do marketers determine the resource allocation by brand, by country, by retailer and by marketing element.

• Most brand marketers and most retail category managers are focused on spending the funds allocated to them. This paper helps them understand the C-suite spending rationale determining what resources  ultimately trickle  down to the brand and then out to the retailer.

• The not so surprising conclusion is that management commits resources where returns are judged to be highest in the short term or of most strategic value long term.  For example, does the $250K spent on a TV spot on Dancing with the Stars have a +/- ROI vs.  a display  in Walmart or a  Kroger loyalty card mailing or a temporary price reduction allowance (a TPR) at Rite Aid.   From a shareholder’s perspective , the higher  ROI should win.

• The startling fact is that few top managers, brand managers or retail category managers have the discipline to prove the returns of their effort. This is the continuing shame of the marketing profession.

Category Management Mastery: The Key to Growth!

Mastering Category Management is critical to your company’s growth because Category Management addresses the three most important trends of the millennium:

  • The ever increasing power of retailers who focus on growing CATEGORIES instead of BRANDS.
  • The digital empowerment of shoppers who seek need state satisfaction at the CATEGORY level.
  • ‘Big data’s’ propensity to yield its most valuable insights at the CATEGORY level.

Mastering Category Management addresses these trends by:

  • Ensuring you speak your customer’s language of category growth.
  • Assuring you speak your shopper’s language of category satisfaction.
  • Organizing big data at the category level where insights naturally emerge.

Prepare to invest more resources in Category Management, especially in a larger, better trained staff and the software they will need to succeed in a more complex environment. These incremental resources will be needed to:

  • Mine gigabytes of household-level data for insights
  • Respond to retailers’ demand for individual store assortment solutions, and
  • Manage a more complex supply chain


The Category Management Association is solely responsible for the paper’s findings and conclusions; we would like to acknowledge and thank the following companies for their contributions: Acosta Sales & Marketing, Ahold, CMKG, Coca-Cola, Colgate Palmolive, Dr. Pepper Snapple Group, DunnHumbyUSA, General Mills, Georgia Pacific, Interactive Edge, JDA Software, KMart, Nestle, PepsiCo, 7-Eleven, Unilever

Revolutionary In-Store Insights: End Cap Displays and The Shopper

This paper provides insight into a specific in-store merchandising tool, the endcap display. Understanding the impact of this merchandising tool is more important today than ever before.

  • Marketing dollars are flowing away from traditional mass vehicles like TV towards the store. Why? Because in-store merchandising vehicles influence behavior at the “first moment of truth”, the purchase decision at the shelf.
  • Retailers and manufacturers must understand the effect of each in-store merchandising alternative on the brand, the overall shopping basket and total store sales.
  • This paper presents insights from a new research tool, VideoMining, which analyzes shopper behavior without intruding into the shopping experience.
  • These are new insights. This white paper will give you a better understanding of how endcaps effect the shopper’s behavior.

Three Trends Changing the FMCG Ecosystem

This paper addresses at a high level three important trends that are permanently changing the FMCG competitive ecosystem. These changes affect all the industry participants: retailers, manufacturers and the diverse community of solution providers. The three trends and their implications are:

• The Growing Power of the Retailer. The traditional weapons of FMCG mass marketing (TV and magazines) have lost effectiveness and especially efficiency thereby debilitating brand equity building. At the same time retailers have consolidated and now dominate the moment of truth at the shelf aided by new tools such as loyalty cards. The balance of power has permanently shifted towards the retailer.

• The Digitally Empowered Shopper. Today’s shopper can rapidly compare price and quality. This creates new shopping behaviors especially the cherry picking of formats to satisfy specific shopper need states.

• The Big Data Big Bang. Digitally driven shopping behavior creates billions of variegated data points. This tsunami of data comprises ‘big data’. Applying new predictive analytics to this expanding data universe enables marketers to better understand.