top of page

April 18: Merchant and buying teams can't run RMNs

In this edition, we debunk the myth that Retail Media Networks can be treated as a retailer's side hustle and run by existing merchandising and buying teams. Plus, added context on retail media updates from Walmart, Chase and Albertsons.

Unfold with Threefold. April 18, 2024. Merchant and buying teams can't run RMNs
Unfold is a biweekly newsletter from the retail media experts at Threefold.

Hello! We are once more nearing the end of another week, and we aren’t too far off from the end of the month, either. Time keeps flying by, especially for those of us working in the busy world of retail media. There is never a dull moment.

Welcome back to Unfold, the biweekly newsletter from the retail media experts at Threefold.

These past couple of weeks have been major for us at Threefold. In April alone, we’ve appeared on-stage at two major industry events to share our learnings and insights from the past 15+ years of building and operating Retail Media Networks. CEO Samuel Knights spoke at the Ascendant Network's Retail Media Bootcamp alongside moderator Andrew LipsmanAdvance powered by Loblaw's Ray Balberman and Co-op's Rachel Halter, to discuss global perspectives on leveraging loyalty in the era of cookie deprecation. It was an excellent discussion and the entire day was an outstanding melding of the minds. We’re looking forward to our continued partnership with the Ascendant Network.

Additionally, Partnership Director Amber Roberts took the stage at Skai's ShopAble event, where she shared insights with panelists Diana Finster of Walmart Connect and Mark Williamson of Costco Wholesale. That too was a great discussion full of varied perspectives, and we have to give kudos to Skai for putting on such a great event. 

Now, let’s get down to business: Every two weeks, we meet on Threefold’s LinkedIn page to chat about the latest retail media news. Plus, as a bonus, our retail media experts debunk a pervasive retail media myth, digging deep into why that misconception isn’t true.

It's time to Unfold.

In this edition, we’re putting to rest the myth that retail media is a side hustle that can be picked up by retailers’ merchandising or buying teams

In reality: For it to be truly successful, retailers must think of retail media not as a side hustle, but as an integral and integrated part of their overall business strategy. Retail media has the power to unlock lucrative additional bottom-line ad revenue and top-line sales that drive business-transforming growth for retailers across sectors, especially in ones with lower margins on sales, like grocery. 

There’s a misconception that retail media is something that merchandising or buying teams can take on as an extension of their existing roles. While these teams are brilliant at doing what retailers do best – buying and selling products – they are not marketers and they are not media specialists. Having these teams flip-flop between roles creates inefficiencies and leads to a half-baked retail media strategy. 

The truth is, retailers need to have dedicated, specialized teams with robust media knowledge and expertise focused on building and operating their RMNs. These teams should act as standalone media agencies that work directly with brands to leverage the retailers’ first-party data and media estates online, in-store and off-site to deliver omnichannel marketing opportunities that reach consumers across the path to purchase. What’s more, retail media must be factored into the merchandising and buying teams’ plans, goals and budgets, so it isn’t misinterpreted as a threat to these teams, but as a counterpart in the retailers’ overall business strategy that, ultimately, enhances the customer experience no matter where or how a shopper decides to engage with a retailer. 

To achieve the best results, retailers must work smarter, not harder! 

Read the entire newsletter by subscribing on LinkedIn.

About Threefold

Founded in 2008, Threefold is the world's leading Retail Media Network (RMN) specialist, headquartered in both New York and London. As part of the SMG agency network, which employs over 380 retail media experts, Threefold's primary mission is to unlock incremental CPG budgets, curate media campaigns that supercharge sales and elevate its retail partners into top-tier omnichannel media owners, spanning in-store, off-site and online.

Threefold's services include consultancy, evaluation, and a white-label in-house solution that has seen the agency build, run and operate over 10 Retail Media Networks to date. In the UK, Threefold runs and operates Walgreens' Boots Media Group and Morrisons Media Group and additional live partners include major retailers like Asda, The Co-op and The Very Group.


bottom of page