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«Implementing the Retail Marketing Automation solution from HP has given us global control of our in-store promotions. The agility and flexibility of this system has reduced costs, increased efficiency and made us more competitive», - Isidre Benito, Marketing Communications Director, Caprabo.

With 525 hypermarkets, supermarkets and convenience stores spread throughout Spain, Caprabo operates in an intensely competitive arena. Price wars are constantly being fought and because the company believes that 70 per cent of customer buying decisions are made in the store, sales are increased by effective point of sale marketing.

Caprabo uses mainly banners and posters to advertise its promotions but its process for creating these materials had become complex and difficult to manage, resulting in high costs, long lead times and waste.

Marketing materials were printed in four regional centres. With some 300 promotions a year, covering up to 800 products, the job was already complicated. There were variations in the type of promotions, products and languages required by individual stores and the system was not geared to cope with different store sizes, resulting in considerable wastage at the smaller outlets.

Objective

Spain’s Caprabo supermarket chain wanted to centralise design and production of its in-store marketing materials.

Approach
  • Caprabo implemented the HP Retail Marketing Automation (RMA) solution – a combination of software, hardware and services that supports on-line collaboration between all the people and resources involved in creating marketing materials.

IT Improvements
  • On-line connection gives Caprabo centralised, global management of the whole promotional process and produces more homogenous campaigns.

  • Integration with enterprise programs like SAP, and design programs like Quark and Illustrator, speed up the design process and produce in higher quality.

  • Creating and storing PDF files for generic backgrounds reduces duplication of effort.

Business benefits

  • Providing customers with vibrant, timely communications and increasing products under promotion from 800 to 1,400 promotes sales and beats the competition.

  • The scalability of HP RMA will support Caprabo’s aggressive growth plans.

  • Money has been saved by reducing the production headcount from eight to four.

  • Promotional lock-down times have been reduced from 28 days to 17 and print times from 10 days to four resulting in more rapid market responses.

Marketing materials were printed in four regional centres. With some 300 promotions a year, covering up to 800 products, the job was already complicated. There were variations in the type of promotions, products and languages required by individual stores and the system was not geared to cope with different store sizes, resulting in considerable wastage at the smaller outlets.

Rapid response

“To maintain profitability, we have to be highly competitive and display coherent brand values that increase our credibility. That means being agile enough to take quick marketing decisions and deploy them,” says Isidre Benito, marketing communications director with Caprabo. “This was not possible with our old system because we had to repeat many different processes. In addition we had an aggressive growth forecast of 73 per cent in over three years and the system could not be scaled in line with our growth. We had to improve the efficiency of our customer communication and also reduce fixed structure costs. “Technically, we needed a single IT system that would deal with the whole process of creating a campaign in an integral way, starting with product buyers and going right through to point of purchase. It had to interface with our SAP enterprise system, be easily scalable and capable of including all design elements and images so we could use it as a true marketing tool. “We wanted to simplify the promotion and communication process, reduce employee workload and cut down the number of errors. We were also looking for a supplier who would help assess our situation and needs, design an appropriate solution and manage change,” adds Benito.

Centralised process

For Caprabo, there was only one answer that would meet all its needs and that was a centralised Retail Marketing Automation (RMA) solution from HP. Designed for managing the production of integrated promotional campaigns and point of sale materials, RMA is a mix of software, hardware and services. This comprehensive on-line workflow solution produces a collaborative environment among creative consultants, marketing directors and store staff that can be used by any number of people. At Caprabo, the Java-based RMA software is completely integrated with internal systems like SAP, which means it can gather all the information required to build each promotion, from pictures and text to product and store information. It can connect to any number of both internal users and external users such as agencies. Most printing is done by three commercial print service providers who mainly use HP Indigo digital presses and can interface with RMA to see all the right information at the right time. To cut out duplicated work, fixed background PDF files are stored with information that will not change and the variable data for each promotion is added when the sign is generated.

Vibrant results

The HP RMA technology has transformed Caprabo’s point of purchase promotional materials from uniform, basic banners to vibrant communications with hundreds of variations personalised to each store and each promotion – an achievement that would have been impossible with the old manual system. This enables the company to reflect changes in commercial policy without major impact on the system. Implementing RMA has brought many advantages to Caprabo’s business. Previously, all 525 stores had their own Epson printers but these have now been replaced by HP models which are used for urgent jobs.

“RMA has enabled us to reduce promotion lock-down times from 28 days to 17 and to reduce printing times from 10 days to four,” adds Benito. “We have also reduced labour costs of people immediately involved at headquarters and branch level by cutting staff from eight people to four.

“The HP system has supported the sustainable growth in the number of stores we now have and to also grow the number of products under promotion from 800 to 1,400. There has also been a radical reduction in the number of typographic errors. “Our promotions are now more homogenous and coherent which results in high quality, fully integrated campaigns. Posters can be designed for individual stores and quantities can be varied for the size of store, which cuts our waste. Before delivery, posters are automatically sorted according to product category which makes store setup easier and quicker. Our customers benefit because they have richer communications with more information and in turn that increases our sales,” concludes Benito.

 

 

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