Morning Brew - ☕ Second time around

Stories about stores, ICYMI.
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March 30, 2024

Retail Brew

T-Mobile for Business

It’s Saturday, and we thought you could use some weekend reading. So we’re resurfacing some of our favorite coverage of stores from Q1 for this ICYMI-themed special edition. You can thank us later.

In today’s edition:

—Andrew Adam Newman, Erin Cabrey, Alex Vuocolo

STORES

Message receipted

The 50-foot rug of a CVS receipt inside Matty Benedetto's studio. Matty Benedetto

When Matty Benedetto bought a bag of Swedish Fish from a CVS in Burlington, Vermont, recently, he received a receipt that was longer than his arm. While he was not, to be sure, the first to notice that CVS receipts can be lengthy, what Benedetto did next likely was a first.

He returned to his nearby design studio, re-created a high-resolution digital version of his receipt, and then found a rug manufacturer in China that could reproduce it. About three weeks later, the rug arrived, and he unfurled it in his sprawling 6,400-square-foot studio.

“CVS receipts are always way too long,” Benedetto said in a video he posted to his social media accounts. “So I decided to re-create one of my receipts into a rug that stretches 50 feet long.”

Keep reading here.—AAN

     

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GROCERY

Shelf care?

Macaroni & cheese aisle at grocery retailer Kraft Heinz

While you’re likely familiar with the experience of staring at the shelf displays of a grocery store, mulling over the choices amid the many products and brands before you, you may not be aware of the people who help craft—or should we say Kraft—them.

CPG giant Kraft Heinz has an entire team dedicated to working with retailers to workshop their planograms (the plan for the layout of the aisles and shelves) to give better on-shelf visibility not only to its brands like Kraft Mac & Cheese, Heinz Ketchup, Kool-Aid, and Jell-O, but also improve the appearance and performance of entire categories on store shelves.

This customer development team, part of its sales organization, is a relatively new one at Kraft Heinz, built in 2020 “out of the need of just how important category growth can be,” Andy McKeon, head of customer business development, told Retail Brew. After food giants Kraft Foods Group and H. J. Heinz Company merged in 2015 to form Kraft Heinz, there was “a lot of reorganization,” he noted, and category insights and resources were hard to come by.

Keep reading here.—EC

     

MARKETING

Brand revival

Sign on a Claire's store Peter Dazeley/Getty Images

What do Crocs and Claire’s have in common? Both companies made significant comebacks in recent years after hitting a low point financially and culturally in the late 2010s.

“When you Googled Claire’s, the only thing that came up was a bankruptcy,” Kristin Patrick, chief marketing officer for accessory and jewelry brand Claire’s, said during a session at the National Retail Federation’s annual Big Show conference. “Skip to two and a half years later, and we were one of Fast Company’s Most Innovative Companies.”

Crocs CMO Heidi Cooley told a similar story: As recently as 2016, she said, the slipper-shoe brand was mostly known as the punchline in online memes. Now it’s become a cultural phenomenon all over again, with rising sales and a number of high-profile corporate and celebrity partnerships under its belt.

Customer insight: What’s behind these brand revivals? Both executives pointed to strategic shifts that emphasized allowing customer feedback, particularly from Gen Z, to guide decisions.

Keep reading here.—AV

     

SWAPPING SKUS

Some of our favorite recent retail reads from our friends.

Ding-dong: Why the commissioner of the Federal Communications Commision sent letters to retailers, including Amazon and Sears, about smart doorbells. (Tech Brew)

Theft and right: Understanding and solving the tricky problem of cargo theft. (CFO Brew)

Whatever floats your tote: How the ~$45 L.L.Bean Boat and Tote benefited from an organic online trend. (Marketing Brew)

Retail reliable 5G networks: Give your network an upgrade with T-Mobile for Business. With T-Mobile’s nationwide 5G supporting your locations, you can optimize your operations and omnichannel experience simultaneously with purpose-built retail solutions.*

*A message from our sponsor.

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