I need help with trade promotions, but I don’t know where to start

There are many ways to set started.   Here is one possible path to help you and your organization get better at managing trade promotions:

  1. Realize you have a TPM problem.  This is probably the most important step of all.  You can’t fix a problem if you don’t acknowledge you have a problem.
  2. Document your current TPM practices.   You can’t compare your trade promotion processes to your competitors’ or industry best-practices without first documenting your own work flows and policies.  This is something you can do right now.
  3. Optional: Interview & hire a TPM consultant.  If you don’t have internal resources for step 4, seek out and interview industry experts to help you do a TPM best-practices gap analysis.  You may think you have a big problem with trade promotion management, but learn your situation is similar to your peers.   You don’t know unless you do a gap analysis vs the industry.
  4. Gap analysis; Compare your TPM practices to industry best-practices to see what’s different, and where you can improve.  If you already have TPM solution, you may learn that you are not taking full advantage of important features or enhancements in your software tool.   If you don’t have a TPM solution, the gap analysis will highlight potential benefits of implementing a TPM module within your ERP, or a stand-alone third-party TPM solution.
  5. Perform ROI analysis.  Once you know the gaps, you can cost out how to fix each gap.  The fix might be as simple as more training on your existing TPM software, or as big as purchasing a new TPM solution.  The ROI analysis will compare the cost of the fix versus the potential benefits to your organization.   Often the ROI for fixing TPM is excellent, and the payback period is very short.
  6. If the ROI is positive, take action!   All of this work will be wasted if you don’t take action.

These steps can help your company get more volume and profit from the second largest expense category on your CG brand’s P&L.

If you are considering using a TPM consultant to help with this process, please include us in your RFP, or send us an email  at info@cgsquared.com.


Alex Ring


CG Squared, Inc.