Three Quarters of FMCG Campaigns Fail in Year 1… Why?

A recent study by Nielson, reported on by Marketing Week, highlights a statistic that should worry many NAMS and Shopper Marketers – 3/4 of FMCG campaigns actually FAIL in their first year.

In Nielsen’s Breakthrough Innovation Report, 61,000 SKUs, representing over 12,000 NPDs across Europe since 2011 were analysed. The report found that 2/3rds of products failed to exceeded 10k unit sales, which means most failed to secure a retail listing after the first year.

Report States Marketers Can Buck The Trends & Deliver Results

Although the report may, at first glance, seem somewhat concerning, Nielsen did state that marketers have the opportunity to overcome the high failure rates.

Managing director of Nielsen’s innovation practice, Johan Sjöstrand, had this to say on how marketers can improve results:

“Through the study process, we found proof that innovation success is never just a remarkable coincidence. It’s about deliberate attempts to disrupt all aspects of the innovation process and challenge everyday norms, such as consumer attitudes, long-standing beliefs, launch mechanics, organisational behaviour and disciplines.”

Four Key Elements to Successful NPD Launches Identified

Nielsen’s report went on to identify four common elements that contribute towards highly successful NPD launches.

The reports authors go on to state that the absence of any one of these principles will “severely limit” the possibility of success:

1. Choice: get the right innovation – make the right choice of innovation to pursue by walking in the shoes of the consumer to uncover key demand-driven insights.
2. Process: get the innovation right – have the right organisational framework and processes to shape the chosen innovation into a market-ready offer that has relevance, differentiation and superiority.
3. Marketing: get the activation strategy right – creative marketing has to be original and has to tell the story of the innovation.
4. Togetherness: get everyone right behind you – breakthrough success is the product of organisational togetherness, from top to bottom.

Importance of Tying it All Together

The four elements highlighted in Nielsen’s report offer insights into what traits the most successful NPD launches since 2011 have in common. Acting on this information, and having a Field Marketing agency that can work with you to ensure all bases are covered, can be the deciding factor of which statistic your NPD campaign falls into… The 3/4’s that fail, or the 1/4 that succeeds.

Getting the Activation Strategy Right

Point three of Nielsen’s report stresses the importance of the activation strategy and in our experience one single issue can cause 37% of in-store promotions/NPD launches to fail. We’ve got a wealth of experience both collaborating with brands on strategy and delivering against it, in fact our in-store activation has been awarded gold standard at the Field Marketing and Brand Experience awards.

We’ve put together a free guide to help NAMs and Shopper Marketers alike to understand these potential pitfalls of activation and how to avoid them. You can download it for free by clicking here or on the banner below.


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