Planning made easy: six steps to simplify cooler planning

Do you feel Nexo Discovery could work well for your business, yet have no clear idea of how implementation should be carried out? We know that there is always work to be done when it comes to planning new initiatives. Below, we’ve outlined six practical steps for rolling out a connected cooler program.

Phasing cooler data implementation for dynamic enterprises

Nexo works with bottlers and drinks brands across global territories and, through our collaborative work, we’ve formed an understanding of typical challenges. In a fast-moving commercial environment, there is often little time to devise processes, especially for the planning and implementation of data analysis.

We’ve summarised the steps that we believe will guide you through an intelligent exploration of your data- minimising time wasted, and maximising insight.

  1. Commission Nexo controllers to lock data to your ownership

Good data husbandry begins with care, and process. Your coolers will only appear in Discovery once they have been commissioned. You can choose to do this at the OEM prior to deployment, or in the field on routine sales visits- or both. And, our auto-commissioning process enables an OEM-commissioned controller to be automatically linked to your account, via regular syncing- meaning you can get on with the job in hand. Contact our service team for more information.

  1. Decide how to collect your data

There are two main ways in which Nexo data is transferred to Discovery. Your communication method is another flexible feature of the Nexo solution, designed to fit your precise needs.

Firstly, Bluetooth is used to transmit data via the Nexo app, from the device in your rep’s hand directly to your own Discovery portal. If choosing to use Bluetooth, you must choose whether to collect data manually or automatically, and give relevant personnel a briefing on how to do this.

Secondly, modem communication is possible, suitable for banks of coolers in single locations, and situations where it is less common for reps to visit coolers.

Which fits your way of working best? Talk to your account manager to gain a deeper understanding of the pros and cons of each method. You can also use both!

  1. Decide which coolers to evaluate, and which period to look at

What is the hypothesis behind your most important strategic activity, right now? Think about the specific type of cooler that this relates to- or the segment or segments you are targeting. Focusing on a sub-set of coolers can be a way to gain quick wins.

Time period is also important. Do you assess cooler performance monthly, or weekly? Should you match the analysis period to existing operations, or take the opportunity to test this constraint? Perhaps operations can be optimised.

For example, are there any specific outliers, spikes, or other trends in the data? These can be caused by unusual circumstances or events. Reviewing temporal data is a chance to look at activities differently. Furthermore, outliers, or ‘spikes’, should be excluded if you are seeking to establish base line statistics.

 

  1. Evaluate potential commercial and operational impact of data

Above is an example of a ‘decision tree’ flow chart you can build to help you work through the evaluation process. To reach this point, brainstorm all the possible implications you can think of- and then challenge this thinking by asking others to review it. What do expert colleagues say?

This can enable the building of a business case for experimental decisions. Quantify the possible impact of each decision step- with estimated revenue increase, or cost, or some other KPI measure. Once you have a set of possible impacts, and have assigned to them a value or other measure, you can build a picture of what you see happening along the way. What is the chance that you reach each stage? This can be evaluated as you go along.

  1. Design process change to test impact of data

Following the decision tree method and others, you will identify a strategic choice. Nexo Discovery helps you to identify the hypothesis, and analysis of the data will give you hints to the possible outcomes. This needs to be followed with action if you wish to prove your hypothesis, or to refine your strategic choices. Data in Nexo Discovery has already been parcelled into suggested action plans- but this is just the start of the potential impact you can make. Work with Sales, Operations or Service, for example, to define the final action, and to specify the process by which you will carry this out.

The actions involved in this activity ought to be monitored, to see how accurate the hypothesis of the strategic choice is – ‘did it work?’ Measuring and testing the process enables refinement, and success.

  1. Once there is confidence in the impact of the data, decide where to make data available, and to whom

Do you need to distribute the data into your existing ERP systems? Think about the nature of the data relevant to your strategy. If it is commercial, who must see it? If it is operational, how open should your data structure be? It is worthwhile thinking about the impact you’ve idenfitied, and what your business will look like in 12 months’ time. Who do you want to involve in this process- and to share in the success?

Nexo Discovery is built on an open, flexible architecture that enables integration into all types of systems. Speak to your Account Manager to discuss your needs.

 

Here to help

Planning your data strategy at the outset pays dividends in the future. We’ve given you some thought starters, above, to kick off your thinking. However you may wish to take further advice, and alongside its core services, Nexo provides professional services and training for customers. If you would like to discuss this, please contact Niazy Kioufi on niazy@nexo.com.

Practical tips for Asset Management via connected coolers

Asset Management has become a critical process to master for owners of fleets of coolers.  Preventing assets from being stolen or going missing, and maintaining a digital asset register are universal needs. Here are some techniques we recommend to tackle this, using Nexo solution data.*

 

When you want to prevent theft or unauthorized relocation

One of the key indicators that a cooler may go missing because of theft or relocation is declining commercial metrics. (It seems to be commonly the case that a lost cooler follows poor sales, although the causality of this cannot yet be proven by the data).

Nexo Discovery provides action lists for your coolers which specifically point out declining commercial metrics so you’re able to act on those ‘at risk’ coolers before any cooler theft or unmonitored relocation occurs.

 

  • Identify at-risk coolers from the Nexo Discovery action list
  • Check and reassess your visit plan against the at-risk coolers
  • Focus in on lesser trends to refine your cooler deployment plan: what is the right capacity cooler for each individual store?

 

When you want to rectify issues with your asset registry to reduce write-off costs

Another reason coolers go missing in the asset registry is because they are moved from shop to shop, and the movement is not recorded. Often, the rep in the field may know about these movements, but the asset registry is not updated, which means that when it comes time to audit your inventory the coolers are reported as having gone missing, and the cooler is written off.  This can have significant cost associated with it over your entire asset base.

An enhancement in Nexo Discovery is the automatic updating of the addresses and locations of coolers. This removes the need for a manual process when coolers are moved.

Nexo Discovery also flags up coolers which haven’t been visited for a period of time (a metric which is configurable), thus providing another indicator that someone should visit the shop or cooler to ensure that it is there and in proper working condition.

 

When you want to optimize your geographical distribution based on sales intelligence

Bottlers often tell us that they wish to ensure they have proper coverage of a geographical area. Nexo Discovery includes a new set of maps to enable this.

Heat maps, like the one in Figure 2, display key metrics such as cooler distribution, Door Openings, Footfall, and Conversion Rate. Used in tandem with your operational planning, the data can steer you to take action to cover various geographic areas effectively, based on how coolers are performing against your KPIs.

  • Using zoom and pan tools, navigate the map to find commercial ‘cold spots’
  • A small heat gradient surrounding a cooler indicates a good conversion rate, whereas a wide distribution of colour from red to yellow or green shows that sales are below average for the catchment area of the cooler
  • A cluster of high performing coolers in one area indicates high demand. Could these areas be suitable for increased targeting of consumers?

 

Nexo Discovery provides the tools and capability to effectively manage your asset base and prevent theft issues before they arise. Nexo Discovery was designed from ground up to provide easy to use, actionable insights from your coolers – leveraging big data techniques to determine suggested actions, so you can manage your cooler base effectively and efficiently.

Get in touch with us to discuss your specific need and how Nexo Discovery can be used to help maximize productivity from your cooler estate, on sales@nexo.com.

Or why not take a read of our latest think piece, Developing consumer experiences of the future: three tips for FMCG brands.

 

*Please note that the advice in this article is for illustration only, and that any steps you take based on data collected via Nexo should be based on your own analysis and data. Advice in this article may not be appropriate for your organization.

How IoT is transforming the cold drinks industry

Putting data and proximity marketing to use, to increase sales.

Internet of Things technology is making physical objects smart, connected, and more effective. They can collect, measure and action data, sometimes resulting in direct interaction with consumers. Let’s take a look at how such technology can be applied to refrigeration equipment in the cold drinks industry.

By adding sensors to a cooler, you are provided with data to understand how it is performing commercially, and functioning technically. But IoT technology also opens up new marketing opportunities.

Enter the world of proximity marketing – localized, wireless distribution of promotions, marketing campaigns and advertising – allowing companies to connect with customers and deliver a personalized experience of your brand. Your smart coolers can now engage directly with customers passing by the fridge via their smart phones, tablets and smart watches.

This is all made possible by beacons and beacon functionality within controller chipsets, that send signals to attract attention to a specific location, in this case your cooler.

Adding beacon functionality to a cooler allows you to communicate with the consumer at point-of-sale. The cooler can gather data about a person standing in front of it, and deliver personalized messages to that person directly on their own smart device. A smart cooler should also be able to schedule, activate and report on the interaction with consumers. This opens up a whole new dimension of consumer engagement: converting footfall around your cooler into increased branding and sales opportunities.

And what can these marketing messages be about? Anything from special deals to a reference to the weather; “Hey, it’s going to be 30C today – maybe a good idea to grab a cold drink? I’m right behind you!” But the communication is not limited to text and images – looking forward your coolers can also be turned into interactive and personalized augmented reality games, cameras, and video players.

All of a sudden you are getting the same metrics for a physical world campaign as you would from a digital campaign, making them easier to plan and evaluate.

What about the consumer, and their habitual uses of their smart phone- now, and in the future? To be able to have you cooler connect with the people around it, they need to be open to receiving direct communication from you.

2016 report from Mindshare shows that 62 percent of consumers today are happy to share their data as long as they receive something of value in return.

Data can be attained if a person is already signed up through a participating app or social network, and the service allows you to send targeted messages and promotions.

Beacons have been named among the most important new mobile technologies in helping real-world companies deliver an interactive digital experience to their customers. Proxbook published a report for Q4 2015, indicating that 5.103.500 proximity sensors were deployed globally at the end of 2015. It is estimated that 400 million beacon sensors will be deployed by 2020.

According to data shared during a Boston Retail Partners’ session, 70 percent of companies plan to add beacons over the next five years.

Beacons are becoming a crucial part of bringing a digital experience to the offline world, to drive customer engagement through multiple channels. Making your cooler smart and taking advantage of the growing field of proximity marketing will help increase your cold drink sales and maximise the investment in the cooler itself.

Nexo’s range of controllers features beacon technology to enable proximity marketing, as well as commercial and operational metrics to ensure each cooler sells its optimal number of drinks, at the right temperature. We can advise on the best type of solution for your cooler fleet, that will help you to meet your business goals. Email sales@nexo.com to find out more.