Watch: Bill Weiland’s Advice for ‘Winning’ in Natural

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Natural food is filling up shelves in more than just natural retailers, and it’s causing companies to think not only about what they add to their portfolios but also how they talk about those products.

Bill Weiland, founder and CEO of Presence Marketing, told attendees at this summer’s NOSH Live that the leveling off of in sales many natural grocers are experiencing is not due to a lack of demand or supply of natural products, but rather internal “growing pains” from poor categorizing and promotions and marketing efforts.

“It used to be a clear cut formula,” Weiland said. “Now, it’s not so much.”

To win in today’s competitive retail landscape, he thinks retailers first need to “figure out what [their] goals are and who [their] target is.” Only then, Weiland said, can retailers have a focused lens to communicate desired messages.

Retailers aren’t the only ones with a fight ahead of them. Trends toward clean labels and simple ingredients are making what once were uncongested categories increasingly crowded. Now, brands are in a battle for shelf space and funds. Weiland said while many investors bet their money on companies with strong leadership teams, he focuses on something else.

‘I want to see the right product in the right category,” he said. “I think there are tons of examples where the team was right and the food was wrong. And it didn’t succeed… The food is harder to fix because there are times when it will just never build a $50 million business.”

To hear more of Weiland’s advice for winning in the natural food world, watch the video above.