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This month's store watch was carried out by account manager, Katie

MorrisonsFishponds, Bristol

At Morrisons Fishponds, my attention was immediately captured by Bonne Maman’s impressive fridge takeover. The beautifully designed header and aisle fin POS created a striking display that made their desserts hard to resist.

As I ventured further, the alternative milk category offered a fantastic display of in-store theatre, with Alpro leading the charge. Their aisle takeover was adorned with eye-catching assets, including a prominent header board and vibrant floor stickers, making it a focal point as I walked down the aisles.

OXO showcased the growing trend of permanent fixtures in stores with two well-placed installations that added a touch of permanence and reliability to their presence.
Hellmann’s made a bold statement with an aisle takeover featuring multiple POS displays and an exciting sports-themed promotion. Shoppers were drawn in by the chance to “WIN a UEFA EURO 2024 BBQ bundle,” with a massive QR code on the aisle fins ensuring that no one missed out on this perfect summer activation.

The “Good Morning Breakfast” end-of-aisle branded bay was a visual delight, featuring a collaboration of beloved breakfast brands like Weetabix, Lavazza, Tetley, and Jordans. This clever cross-pollination within the same category created an inviting and cohesive display that truly stood out.

KP Nuts also made a significant impact with a large end-of-aisle display, showcasing a variety of POS assets that emphasised their presence in the store.

Free-standing display units (FSDUs) were plentiful throughout the store. Cadbury’s new product developments, such as Caramel Nut Crunch and Nutty Praline Crisp, were particularly tempting. Other notable FSDUs included a vibrant display from Skittles and a promotional unit from McVitie’s, which featured “The Great Biscuit Break Bonanza” with an enticing 1 million prizes to be won.

Lastly, Corona’s “Win an Escape to a Natural Paradise” promotion was prominently featured, with floor stickers and aisle fins guiding shoppers toward their chance to win a dream getaway.

TescoEastgate, Bristol

Upon entering Tesco Eastgate, it was impossible to miss the plethora of “branded mods” lining the individual aisles. Brands with strong colour identities like Arla, Blue Dragon, Patak’s, Hellmann’s, Pot Noodle, Strongbow, Cadbury, Starbucks, Oatly (with their charming POS boxes), Alpro, Felix, Persil, and Gillette made an immediate impact with their vibrant displays.

Free-standing display units (FSDUs) were strategically placed throughout the store, each one more captivating than the last. One standout was Sure deodorant, whose charitable campaign message—“Buy 2, we’ll donate 1”—was both heartwarming and effective. Other notable FSDUs featured brands such as St Pierre, Wotsits Flamin Hot, Robinsons Squash, Brothers Cider, San Miguel, 1664, and Heinz, all showcasing excellent visibility and engagement.

During my visit, Tesco stood out as the leader in digital advertising among the stores I explored. Many brands took advantage of digital screens, creating dynamic and engaging advertisements. These ranged from header displays at the top of fixtures to full-screen ads at the end of aisles, enhancing the overall shopping experience with their eye-catching visuals.

Promotions were plentiful, adding an exciting layer to the shopping experience. The standout promotion was San Miguel’s enticing offer to “Win Spanish escapes every week” along with 1,000 instant prizes. Other notable prize promotions included Heineken’s “Win VIP boxes for you and your friends,” prominently displayed on aisle fins, and Robinson’s “Super Splash Down” campaign, offering daily waterpark prizes and advertised on an eye-catching FSDU unit.

AsdaBedminster, Bristol

ASDA Bedminster was abuzz with in-aisle activity, creating a vibrant shopping experience. Las Chikas stood out with an eye-catching header board and aisle fins, complemented by pink shelf stripping that enhanced product segmentation and visibility. Jacobs Crackers added a touch of humour with their amusing headline, “What sort of cracker snacker are you?”, bringing a smile to shoppers’ faces as they browsed.

Pot Noodle’s in-aisle takeover was another highlight. The bold header board, aisle fins, and floor stickers made a significant impact, as evidenced by the nearly empty shelves. This type of bold in-store presence is becoming increasingly common and effective.

I particularly enjoyed the standout display for Branston Beans. Their clever headline, “Makes other beans taste half baked,” along with the hashtag #5starbeans, caught my eye. The simplicity and effectiveness of the creative execution, especially the bean-themed text, demonstrated that sometimes less is more.

End-of-aisle takeovers also drew attention, particularly Persil’s display featuring Usain Bolt. A unique end-of-aisle takeover sponsored by Pizza Hut was another standout. Their “Family Night Done Right” campaign partnered with Tango to offer shoppers a chance to win Pizza Hut vouchers. Shoppers could enter by purchasing the product and texting PIZZA to the number displayed on the POS. This innovative approach brought a fresh perspective from the restaurant chain into the retail space.

Heinz showcased their new product development (NPD) in collaboration with Cathedral City Cheddar, featuring the catchy tagline “No grater required.” As a fan of cheesy beans, this display certainly caught my attention. The use of Cathedral City’s classic branding colours made the partnership clear and conveyed a premium product feel.

Throughout my visit, I noticed numerous 3D headers, especially in the fridge section, adding a bit of theatre to the shopping experience. Notable displays included Actimel, Activia, and Müller Corner, with elements of the packaging and products seemingly jumping out. The fridge space in ASDA has received an upgrade, with brands like Tropicana and Quorn incorporating POS inside the fridge, enhancing visibility and engagement.

Sainsbury’sWinterstoke Road, Bristol

Upon entering Sainsbury’s Winterstoke Road, I was immediately struck by the abundance of eye-catching free-standing display units (FSDUs) for brands such as Curiously Cinnamon, Nature Valley, Nesquik, and Dash. Beer brands were also making a splash with promotions offering free glasses with purchases. The success of these promotions was evident from the empty shelves where Erdinger and San Miguel glasses had been, with similar offers from Madri and Brooklyn Brewery prominently advertised on aisle fins.

A standout activation was the cross-collaboration between Pipers and Peroni, perfectly capturing the essence of summer. Their branded bay featured the headline “Celebrate Summer with Pipers and Peroni,” with lovely pastel and green brand colours evoking sunny days and outdoor gatherings.

One of my favourite in-store activations was Yeo Valley’s promotion, offering a free pack of herb seeds with every tub of spread purchased. This was cleverly done through an aisle fin with the playful strapline “YEO your own,” aligning perfectly with Yeo Valley’s brand ethos and appealing to their customer base.

Promotions were aplenty throughout the store, adding excitement to the shopping experience. Robinsons Squash offered a chance to “Win a Flavour Adventure” with trips to street food markets in Thailand, Mexico, or Tokyo. This fresh and specific prize offer was activated on a colourful FSDU. Alpen’s promotion offered a £25k garden makeover in collaboration with BBC Gardeners’ World Magazine, featuring a QR code for more details. Peroni’s promotion, “Win tickets to BST Festival with a 5-star stay package,” was unmissable with its huge QR code.

The store was also alive with 3D die-cut creatives, most notably from Gü, featuring an enormous Gü pot that made you wish it were real! Alpro’s 3D cartons and Danone’s standout 3D displays proudly showcased their products in an engaging manner. Danone also highlighted their status as an official Team GB partner for the Olympics, adding a patriotic touch. Old El Paso similarly emphasised their Team GB partnership, contributing to the Olympic buzz in-store.

Sainsbury’s dedicated a nice activation space for Heineken 0%, featuring a mini-fridge in the ambient section to keep the beer super cold, complemented by digital screens. The message, “Say yes with no and low alcohol,” was prominently displayed, reinforcing the trend towards lower alcohol options.