More than £2m has been invested in a range of merchandising solutions, including new stands and point of sale material, to help stockists display the company’s core brands, such as Moulton Mill tools and Cole & Bright lighting.
Further support has been provided by the employment of two merchandisers, backing up Gardman’s sales force of 32. Andy Dilworth, who joined Gardman from Stax, and Daniel Butler, a recent recruit to the garden industry, will cover North and South regions respectively, helping to implement stand builds, layout changes and re-stocking. Their new sign-written vans promoting the brands will become a familiar sight in garden centre car parks across the country this summer. Additional merchandiser support will be rolled out over the next 12 months.
On top of this, to drive footfall, £1.4m has been invested in consumer advertising since February, across print and digital media, including BBC Gardeners’ World magazine, Beautiful Gardens (magazine of the Tillington marketing group), BBC Countryfile magazine, Gardens Illustrated, The Garden, Grow Your Own, Garden Answers, Landscape magazine, Garden News, The Mail on Sunday and The Guardian. Estimated total reach is 9.1 million consumers.
Finally, Gardman has invested an extra £3m in stock holding, to ensure stockists can meet demand. HW reported last month that Gardman is air freighting product to meet demand.
Steve Harper, Gardman’s sales director, says the overall investment is paying big dividends, with sales growth of 20 per cent in garden centres in the year to date. "We have responded quickly and effectively to all the changes in the industry over the past 12 months and, clearly, it is working," he added.