Profile: Lena Lewis, Senior Director, Consumer & Shopper Engagement, Ferrara Candy Co.
Lena Lewis joined Ferrara earlier this year to head up consumer engagement and shopper marketing. She spent 12 years at Mars Wrigley Confectionery building the shopper function and various roles in marketing.
Describe your current position.
LEWIS: My role is more fluid, reflecting the blurring of channels and digital ecosystem. I work across brand marketing and sales teams to build programs that create buzz and conversion. This could be a national program with a movie partner or a from-the-ground-up retail program that leverages our unique portfolio with great brands like Black Forest and Trolli.
How does your company define/organize its shopper marketing function?
LEWIS: Shopper marketing is defined as customer-specific programming from media to display activation. All shopper marketing starts with a core insight that changes a behavior. Too often we are focused on the tactic – it’s more important to pull the right levers to change the behavior. This could be activating through the retailer’s ecosystem or disruptive displays. It depends on the business challenge, product portfolio and relationship with the retailer.
Can you share an example of your team’s work that stands out?
LEWIS: We recently executed a Trolli WTF (What The Flavor) program with 7-Eleven that had great results. It’s another example of strong collaboration to delight our consumers.
What motivates you most in your current position?
LEWIS: I’m a Chicago native and I grew up smelling the aroma of the pan candies being made at the Forest Park factory. I’m passionate about the brands and the growth mindset of the organization.
What about shopper marketing concerns you?
LEWIS: My concern is that most organizations don’t think of shopper marketing as a continuum from strategy to tactics and your business challenge dictates where you lean in.
What is the shopper marketing function’s greatest need today?
LEWIS: Shopper marketing could benefit most from being integrated further upstream in the annual planning process. It’s like shifting from planning shopper tactics to embracing a shopper mindset across the total plan. This is one of my core agenda items. Since I have oversight of our marketing planning process I can be an active champion for this shift.