Field marketing: coping with the data deluge

Sales teams handled by Gekko on behalf of Epson visit PC World, Staples and other retailers to merchandise stock, train sales assistants and collect data. This information is uploaded at the end of each day and used by Epson to check stock levels and product availability, and ensure that stores are compliant with promotional activity.

To ensure that only relevant data is collected, Gekko invested in Opus, a comprehensive multi-platform data-collection tool accessed via iPads.

Gekko staff also work in designated stores at peak shopping periods to demonstrate and sell Epson hardware, collecting data in the process.

This is used to check that the promotion is being communicated in-store and that the corresponding point-of-sale material is being displayed. The marketing team will assess the take-up rates and use of promotional material when creating future campaigns.

Epson’s consumer sales manager, Tim Bedward, says: ‘We place great value on field-marketing data, which is used both by our sales and marketing teams. Effective data management enables us to monitor stock levels, promotions and merchandising compliance nationwide, and optimise sales accordingly.

‘However, it’s important to keep a strong focus with regards to what you want to achieve, and work backward,’ he adds. ‘Great emphasis can be put on data collection and reporting systems both by agencies and clients, but unless the output is used effectively, then the effort and investment often goes to waste. Opus helps us meet that challenge.’

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