Q&A: Communicating Your Brand In The Digital Age

As more consumers utilize mobile apps as a part of their shopping experiences, it is crucial for consumer packaged goods (CPG) companies to jump into the digital conversation. Steve Cole of Gladson spoke with Food Manufacturing about how companies can harness this new technology to enhance their brand image.

Interview with Steve Cole, chief marketing officer, Gladson

As more consumers utilize mobile apps as a part of their shopping experiences, it is crucial for consumer packaged goods (CPG) companies to jump into the digital conversation. Steve Cole of Gladson spoke with Food Manufacturing about how companies can harness this new technology to enhance their brand image.

Q: What are some challenges facing food companies and CPG companies today?

A: In the digital battle for the CPG shopper, consistency is key. With mobile and tablets, shoppers have an interactive list created before they even leave for the store. Impulse shopping is influenced heavily by mobile content consumed while in store, whether it be a recipe, coupon or price comparing products.

Until recently, brands have been in control of the conversation, but the rise of the informed shopper has quickly eroded the one-to-many model food retailers are used to. Equipped with new technology and more choices, today’s consumers are in the driver’s seat. Brands must ensure they’re consistently represented in new media, print, online and in-store, without diluting their message.

Q: What are GS1 standards?

A: GS1 is an international organization dedicated to the development and implementation of global specifications for the management of supply and demand chains. The standards this organization publishes are used throughout the industry and ensure product information is consistent and accurate as it moves through the supply chain — from manufacturers to stores to consumers.

Q: How can food companies benefit from following these standards?

A: Following these standards ensures that a product runs smoothly from the factory to the shelf. The standards cover everything in supply chain and logistics, from weight and dimensions to packaging and handling information for individual products, cases and pallets of product, making sure that a manufacturer’s or brand’s products fit on the truck and ultimately make it to store shelves (both virtual and brick-and-mortar).

Q: What are some of the most recent updates to the GS1 Standards that could impact food manufacturers?

A: The recent updates to the standards aim to drive waste out of the supply chain, and improve product information, safety and traceability. For manufacturers specifically, the standards address the needs of shoppers with accurate, in-depth product, packaging and nutrition information, and make the foodservice supply chain more efficient.

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