TECHNOLOGY

CSA Feature: PepsiCo pictures accurate product mixes

BY Dan Berthiaume

PepsiCo is ensuring the right products are placed in the right stores with a mobile app.

The CPG giant is leveraging the HiFi mobile computer vision solution from mobile workforce technology provider GoSpotCheck to streamline the previously manual process of optimizing store product mixes and ensuring compliance in its beverage categories.

“PepsiCo is using HiFi to localize their beverage product mix,” said Matt Talbot, CEO and cofounder of GoSpotCheck. “They want to localize assortments and get the right mix of products for certain accounts, based on demographic differences. In one store, you may stock more isotonic sports drinks. In another store a few miles away, you may stock more traditional carbonated soft drinks.”

Leveraging a mobile app embedded with the computer vision capabilities of GoSpotCheck HiFi, PepsiCo field associates use their smartphone camera to take a photo of a cooler filled with PepsiCo beverage products. The HiFi technology automatically identifies every product in the picture frame by its SKU number. Associates can take up to three pictures of each cooler, capturing the top, middle and bottom of the storage container.

In addition, managers at PepsiCo headquarters can load in programs, goals, and potential benefits for accounts (such as promotions) to the app. “PepsiCo can get that information to the fingerprints of the field agent so they can change the product mix or reorders,” said Talbot.

Talbot also explained how PepsiCo achieves significant time savings with their mobile field service app.

“It used to take weeks to understand the product mix and drive compliance,” Talbot said. “Now it takes seconds. Field agents use HiFi across a whole chain to look at coolers, and also to look at individual packages. They can optimize the right mix at the right time, and don’t have to take hours to complete audit.”

Jim Holland, director of sales capability for PepsiCo, said the CPG company can ensure it is selling the products local consumers actually want to buy.

“The reason we have tailored execution is that we’re using consumer insights to tell us what we should actually be selling within the store,” said Holland. “So, as we create that localization, we wanted to have the capability using HiFi to be able to come back and understand: are we delivering against those key priorities?”

Holland added that many different levels of the PepsiCo organization can take data collected via HiFi and apply it to enterprise components such as pricing power, trade promotion, adjacencies, and brand marketing.

“They can literally can take all this granular UPC-level information that’s being provided from the computer vision machine learnings and actually be able to give you a good footprint of what the execution is in the store and what is our next opportunity,” said Holland

PepsiCo started piloting HiFi in Colorado in summer 2018. The company will roll out the solution market by market during the next six months, prioritizing by opportunity and which markets have large compliance gaps.

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