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Category Management Consultancy

The last thing i needed were more consultants telling me about Category Management. These people rolled up their sleeves and helped me
implement Category Management

Noble Marketing is not really in the business of "evangelising" Category Management although we will happily offer our own views on how to operate it or to propose the optimum template set for a clients category. It is our experience that most FMCG firms already know what they are about when it comes to CM and their challenge has become to maintain CM momentum long after the excitement (and the budget) of the first big CM projects has expired. So for example, we recently undertook the refreshing of many hundreds of Category Templates for a leading soft drink manufacturer. We did the legwork so that the local Category Managers were freed up to deliver the insight the data revealed.

Another major manufacturer, this time of toiletries, asked us to go further. Their Category Management team has to deal with the complexity presented by operating in several businesses across many European countries. They briefed us to create several formats of Category Templates with the goal of achieving a high company standard of category insight. Each format followed the same coherent logic, but we undertook to tailor presentation-ready material to the expertise and data available in each local business. Take a moment to review our services in more detail below. Can we be of assistance?

Customer Marketing

Every now and then 5 customers hit us all at once for Range Planning assistance. Noble Marketing cover off the analysis leaving my guys free to present the results

Customer (or Trade) Marketing departments in any company we have ever worked are typically both productive and highly stretched. Noble Marketing has a great deal of experience creating category assessments, conducting the background work for range reviews and doing analysis into opportunity gaps. Our associates combine the valuable skills of strong data literacy with top end spreadsheet capability, allowing us to take some of our client's peak time workloads. And because our people have worked in a variety of categories, we normally have somebody who could work with you tomorrow and hit the ground running.


  • Category Performance analysis
  • Retailer Presentations
  • Range and Space Optimization using market and/or Named Account Data
  • All outputs completed in Powerpoint so that they can be easily presented.

Promotional Effectiveness

We know we need to promote to make the volumes, but it doesn't take a genius to realise we could be doing this better.

Which promotional dollar is the most effective has always been a mystery. But now the typical manufacturer has to promote heavily just to generate the volumes that will guarantee a continued listing. With Trade budgets high and rising, Promotional Effectiveness has never been so important. On behalf of one major fmcg client, we recently undertook to evaluate the promotional effectiveness of all their activities and those of their competitors in a variety of stores. By aggregating a large number of observations using named account data and linking it to other data sources, we achieved an evaluation that has made promotional expenditure more efficient, without the need for significant investment in additional data.

Noble Marketing can also help you source both the data and the specialist analysis skills to allow you to analyse the price elasticities that are emerging in your market place. You can then use these to create fact based arguments to discuss between manufacturer and retailer. This is a very challenging area, requiring a careful definition of the market model before the appropriate regression techniques are used to assess exactly what is going on. Even defining what you want to achieve is complex. Noble Marketing has appropriate templates that may guide your thinking.

Consumer Insight

Which promotional dollar is the most effective has always been a mystery. We have to lift the veil.

New research into consumer behaviour is challenging the way that many categories are segmented. One of our major fmcg clients has been evaluating the alternative proposals of segmenting their category. It has been important to avoid expensive re-writes of their Nielsen databases before confirming the final segmentation. Noble Marketing was able to take the existing data and recut it to the new segmentation so that the outcomes could be debated and new reports test run before the final database specification was agreed.

There is data that you could buy tomorrow from Nielsen or Information Resources that will greatly improve your understanding of promotional effectiveness. However even they struggle to use their standard data delivery to unravel the huge number of variables affecting category sales over a period of time. With their Modelling and Analytics teams, Nielsen and IR can use powerful statistical techniques to analyse all the store level detail available to them. In this way they arrive at an assessment of the strength of a variety of promotional mechanics affecting the SKUs being modelled.

With the agreement of Tesco and payment of the appropriate fee, Tesco Loyalty Card Data is now available to Tesco suppliers. While Tesco will not allow their agent to divulge names and addresses, suppliers can interrogate to an incredible degree the shopper behaviour of people who buy (or don't buy) their products. To describe what is possible with this data source is almost impossible - you are better thinking in terms of what possible questions you have ever had about your consumers, then asking if the needed attributes are held in the Loyalty Card database. For more details, see the article in "What's Hot"

Category data: Sourcing, Management, Reporting


Noble Marketing can act as an out sourced department for running routine reports on a short or long term basis. The following is just a selection of the kinds of data application we have implemented for clients.


All information contained on this site is presented in good faith and is based on information gathered at the time of dealing with the company, service or web site in question at the time of this publication. In consequence, no advice, interpretation, implication or factual reference should be acted upon without the undertaking of normal commercial precautions.