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From the Entrepreneur’s Perspective: Five must-have items for your retail pitch to buyers!

By Romy Taormina

You have one first impression. Let’s make it count. Many times you can not get in to see a buyer or you may need to pitch to him/her via email, so a PowerPoint Presentation is an effective vehicle by which to communicate your main points in bite-size manageable chunks, and to surprise and delight your retailer…so you do get the in-person meeting and/or land the account.

Beyond the obvious of making your PowerPoint Presentation look professional, following are five must-have items for your retail pitch to buyers.

1. Product story (how did your product come to be) and product overview (how it’s truly unique. If the retailer carries a competing product, address how your product compares).
2. Market Opportunity – why the buyer needs your product in his/her assortment. Include sales data and tell them what kind of movement they can expect to have by adding your product. They need to hear how you will increase their incremental sales and their margins.
3. Current Retail Distribution – adds credibility. Tell them who you currently supply to, and at what price points.
4. Purchase Decision Hierarchy – include how your product delivers on all purchase decision drivers (i.e. efficacy, brand awareness). Whatever press you have, share it, and communicate what you have in the pipeline.
5. Recommendations for which sku(s) you feel they should add to their assortment and why it makes sense (you have done your homework on this retailer – you have shopped their store shelves. Explain how your product fills a void).

One other item: I also include Appendices, where applicable. These items are not the priority, but they add value. If the buyer has time to read them, he/she will.
i. Trending (include stats that indicate that trends are moving towards increased sales opportunities; show the buyer why he/she needs your product today/now).
ii. Accolades (adds credibility).
iii. Testimonials (adds credibility).

We would love to hear from you. What has worked or not worked for you during your pitches to retail buyers?

2 thoughts on “From the Entrepreneur’s Perspective: Five must-have items for your retail pitch to buyers!

  1. I was curious as to when you would give pricing information. I represent a small start-up business that manufactures a certain type of hardware. We are a b2b firm, but would like to get into a few local stores for consumer purchase. After I have made contact to send information, do I include pricing at this point?

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    1. Good question. Always include wholesale cost pricing and suggested retail pricing when making first contact with retailers…Any first communication with them would be incomplete without it. Retailers need to know what margin points you are offering them.

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