Evaluating Price Response as Opposed to Price Elasticity


Last year, Amy Gallo published “A Refresher on Price Elasticity” in the Harvard Business Review). It was a great primer for how most analytics firms address price questions from marketers, and I am a little frustrated with myself for taking so long to comment on it. Continue reading

Innovate or Renovate?


All of the key principle here at Middlegame got our start in sales and marketing at The Coca-Cola Company, aka what insiders simply call “The Company.” We preach many of the do’s and don’ts we’ve learned over the years with The Company to those who will listen.  And despite our analytics platform being called CIA®, none of us know the directions to Langley, VA. Continue reading

Understanding the Value of the Brand Versus the Value of the Brand’s Price Position


Recently, Middlegame leveraged our novel tool, the Competitive Interaction Analysis (CIA)®, for a very unique purpose. A Middlegame client wanted to a more customer-based evaluation of brand equity. She had worked with other researchers applying conjoint analysis, but was worried about the lack of accounting for the full marketing mix as well as very different channel dynamics that the brand was experiencing.

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Refreshing the Concept of Share of Voice in Media Effectiveness


At Middlegame, we usually work with direct shopper response levers like assortment, pricing, and merchandising. It is probably at our insistence that buyers shop by SKU which makes it our go-to level of analysis. However, we sometimes get asked to provide a detailed assessment of incrementality versus transferred demand for the media investment. Continue reading

Roles in the FMCG Portfolio … Recruitment, Frequency, Upsize, and Upscale


In the last blog, I described the PITA Model that we were introduced to while at The Coca-Cola Company. A quick review of that blog will familiarize you with the PITA Model if it is new to you.

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Shopper Analytics and the PITA Model


While at The Coca-Cola Company, I was introduced to a fairly straightforward approach to comparing markets and their potential. It was called the PITA Model. PITA is a method for breaking down sales into the components that are the real drivers of sales. I talk about this a lot and even brought it up in a recent conversation with Pedro Antonio Garcia Lopez that we included as another blog. I thought that I would do a quick overview for those who weren’t raised in the Coca-Cola System.

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Measuring the Complete Lift for Merchandising and Promotions

Blog_18_headerIn a recent project, we were fairly overwhelmed by the complexity of a client’s trade promotions calendar. It contained numerous and varying discount rates that depended on a complex series of requirements, e.g. 2 for £4, 3 for £5, etc., at about seven items each week. Although the category is generally consistent, subsequent SKUs and types of occasions met made the portfolio very complicated. As you would probably expect from the typical Middlegame perspective on assortment opportunities in FMCG, we wanted to tackle the big issue of incrementality and transferred demand first. However, it was easy to get lost in the potential overlapping deals.

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Pete Fader and Bruce Hardie: Middlegame Heroes





It is really amazing that almost 20 years have passed since the landmark article “Modeling Consumer Choice Among SKUs” by Peter S. Fader and Bruce G.S. Hardie in the Journal of Marketing Research (November, 1996). The following year, it was winner of the prestigious 1997 Paul E. Green Award for demonstrating the most potential to contribute to marketing research. If the judges from 1997 took a look at Middlegame, they would see that when the article is translated into the Multiplicative Competitive Interaction (MCI) framework of Cooper and Nakanishi, the entire foundation of Middlegame and its use of regular assessment of incrementality versus transferred demand is substantiated.

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Still Learning from the Leadership in the Soft Drinks Industry


The Canadean Soft Drink Strategy Congress was recently held in Madrid. Pedro Antonio Garcia Lopez, our friend and partner at Itaca Alternative Consulting, was the chair of the event. Middlegame was eager to hear about the conference and Pedro Antonio agreed to give us a firsthand account of his observations and publish them in the blog. The following is an excerpt of that conversation.

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Capturing the First Moment of Truth in Marketing Analytics

Blog_15_HeaderDuring a recent presentation, I had to pause when I was asked what I meant by FMOT. I hadn’t really thought about it, but it had been more than a decade since Procter & Gamble first explained in 2005 how their strategies were targeted at winning the first moment of truth (FMOT) and the second moment of truth (SMOT). Since then, others have added the zero and third moments, but none are more important than the first. During this presentation, I realized that 2005 predated the careers of many audience members and I knew it was time for a refresher.

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