Weasel words of PoP’s detractors

In the Special Report on point of purchase (MW July 15) it was stated that PoP as a discipline is “said to be the easiest to measure”. I am delighted this is the case and I would love to know who else has said it. POPAI has been promoting the responsible use of PoP material and its measurement for years as we are comfortable that it stands up well against any other media and is better than many.

It also said: “The role of PoP material, on the whole, is to generate sales.” This only serves to reinforce the incorrect view that PoP and sales have a direct, inviolate relationship. PoP “stops” the customer, either mentally or physically; in doing this it acts as a reminder of other media.

POPAI recognises this and the other vital fact that, in many cases, sales are not the direct result of effective PoP.

It has been fundamental for POPAI to assess the impact on shopper behaviour and staff interaction through the introduction of display using video analysis. Only in this way can a comprehensive and accurate picture be drawn. Once a common currency or better information through IT is available, other media had better watch out.

I was also intrigued by the comments on compliance and possible wastage in the industry. POPAI research shows compliance levels to be variable within sectors, but rising over the past few years. In pharmacy, the last figure we saw was 75 per cent and in grocery 63 per cent. Neither of these figures are acceptable, but to say that £500m could be wasted is irresponsible, particularly bearing in mind in the recent Future of the PoP Industry study from POPAI/PIRA which shows the entire temporary business in the UK and Ireland is valued at £734m. The total PoP business is worth £1.1bn a year – nearly ten per cent of measured advertising spend.

It is also popular to herald the demise of traditional PoP in favour of technology. POPAI recognises technology has a vital part to play in store and has a specialist digital group and 30 member companies from the sector. However it will not replace what we have now.

POPAI is not complacent but wants all those involved in advertising to see the true benefits of all their media in context and then determine how best to integrate them for maximum impact.

Martin Kingdon


POPAI UK & Ireland

Lutterworth, LeicsE-mail address for letters: mw.editorial@centaur.co.uk Please include your home or business address

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