Dionysius (II) was a fourth century B.C. tyrant of Syracuse, a city in Magna Graecia: Consider him a large supermarket chain of today.
To all appearances Dionysius (the supermarket) was very rich and comfortable, with all the products money could buy, tasteful clothing, electricals and delectable food. He (the supermarket) even had court flatterers (suppliers) to inflate his ego.
One of these suppliers was the court sycophant, Damocles (could that be YOUR brand today?).
One day when Damocles (the supplier) complimented the tyrant (the supermarket) on his abundance and power, Dionysius (the supermarket) turned to Damocles (the supplier) and said, “If you think I'm so lucky, how would you like to try out my life?”
Damocles (the supplier) readily agreed, and so Dionysius (the supermarket) ordered everything to be prepared for Damocles (the supplier) to experience what life as Dionysius (the supermarket) was like. Damocles (the supplier) was enjoying himself immensely…
…. until he noticed a sharp sword hovering over his head, that was suspended from the ceiling by a single horse hair. This, the supermarket explained to the supplier, is what life as a retailer is really like.
Damocles (the supplier), alarmed, quickly revised his idea of what made up a good life (trading relationship), and asked to be excused.
And the moral of this tale? When it comes to trading successfully with today’s supermarkets, you have to really understand them. And to do that, you need to understand what their customers want and expect from them: The pressures shoppers like you and I put them under.
Only then, are you in a position to offer genuine intellectual value and thought leadership: Something that goes beyond trading terms. A valuable asset, which reduces the likelihood of your brand being delisted.
With so many brands facing the possibility of being delisted, one this is for sure: Offering the same tired old reasons for remaining on shelf aren’t enough. You have to demonstrate that you can be a real benefit to the retailer in their fight for share of the market. And that is something that that comes from what shoppers buy, pure and simple!
Shopper understanding = share of market = not being delisted