Wipro Consumer Care: Merchandising for Success
(8 pages of text)
Visual merchandising (VM) plays an important role in hypercompetitive product categories. Though shoppers may be exposed to advertisements extolling the virtues of brands, they tend to get swayed at the point of purchase due to an attractive display or simply because of the prominence of a brand at the retail location. As such, companies must invest in processes and infrastructure to make effective VM possible.
Wipro Consumer Care and Lighting is among the largest fast-moving consumer goods companies in India and has a wide range of products across different categories. One of its sales development managers must choose between several options for making certain that the company’s strategic objectives are met through VM. There are four options, including two models where either the company or its channel partners manage the elements of VM, and two models where VM is outsourced to specialized agencies. All models have their pros and cons and the manager must use the available qualitative and quantitative information to compare the models across different parameters and make a choice.
This case illustrates one of the key issues faced by fast-moving consumer goods companies across the world. Well-conceived products supported by excellent advertising are no longer enough to assure companies of sales at retail locations. Strong brands still need the on-the-ground support of distribution and visibility. Companies are thus confronted with a big question: Should they invest in doing these activities themselves or outsource them to specialized agencies? This case allows instructors to discuss sales and marketing issues faced by medium and large consumer goods companies. It provides a strong illustration of the issues faced by consumer goods companies trying to build capabilities for managing the visibility of their products and supplementing their distributors’ efforts. The case is well suited for courses in sales and distribution management, marketing channels, retailing, retail management and marketing strategy.
India, Large, 2013
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