ATLANTIC CITY, N.J. -- The increase in retailers buying videos directly from studios has given birth to a new type of service merchandising.
Retail merchandising specialists are helping manufacturers and retailers get directly purchased products on the floor and re-ordered, according to Bill Bartels, senior vice president of corporate at Spar Marketing Force.
In video, Tarrytown, N.Y.-based Spar works with Wal-Mart, Kmart and Target, as well as with all the major movie studios. In other product areas, such as health and beauty care and paper products, Spar also works with supermarkets and other classes of trade.
"Our focus is one of moving product -- period," said Bartels. Spar, he added, is not involved in getting the product to the stores. "Getting it out of there is what we are all about."
In different situations, companies like Spar will work for the studios, major distributors or retailers. They may service specific products, programs or entire departments.
At this time, Spar does not service any supermarket video departments. But, he said, "there are far more supermarkets and the major studios are obviously looking to go direct. Some of them are there already. There is definitely a potential."
Bartels spoke with SN after a session at last month's East Coast Video Show here called "Profiting From Video in a Non-Video Store," which was co-hosted by SN and Discount Store News.
"There's a major labor shift in the marketplace, with retailers putting more and more pressure on manufacturers or studios to put labor in store for building displays, writing orders and a whole lot more," he said.
Spar often tries to locate secondary placements of the video near related products where there is potential for cross-merchandising synergy.
"All we are worried about is getting the product to a better selling position and ensuring that selling position on a day-in and day-out basis."