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Deco-Pak’s crazy golf at Glee holds important meaning for garden retailers
Visitors to Deco-Pak’s stand during Glee were able to enjoy the company’s crazy golf themed stand. With six holes to test your golfing prowess, there is also a much deeper meaning to the themed holes, as Deco-Pak Director, Craig Hall, explains:
“Our customers have been superb throughout the pandemic, from their patience when stock availability and logistics were impacted, to working with us to identify key sellers and successful merchandising and POS solutions. As a way of thanking them for their support, we have created a different Glee stand; one which we hope will offer real value for those that join us on-stand.
“Each of the six crazy golf holes has been themed to reflect the challenges that the garden retail sector has faced during the last 18 months, as well as the resulting consumer demand. Supported by our product offering, designed to tap into these trends, retailers can enjoy a little fun as they educate themselves on how changing consumer spend will impact the 2022 season, and how these themes will hopefully drive us towards a new sense of normality, whilst also increasing profitability with products that are considered and truly reflective of what consumers want and need.”
The Deco-Pak crazy golf themes
The pandemic has accelerated the inevitable growth in demand for sustainable and environmentally conscious products. With consumers actively seeking out brands and products that meet these exacting standards, retailers wanting to optimise this will find Deco-Pak’s EcoStone range the top choice for the landscaping category.
Available to see at hole one, Deco-Pak’s EcoStone range raises the bar when it comes to sustainability, transforming waste materials once destined for landfill into decorative aggregates that meet the latest design trends. Glasglo are translucent tumbled glass stones, pot topper stones and cobbles made from recycled televisions; EcoStone Rubber Chippings give new life to former tyres, recycled into chippings that provide safe play areas and act as a weed-suppressing mulch, while EcoStone Sea Shells – sourced from a whelk processing factory, transform pots and terrariums when used as a dressing, and provide natural slug control in borders, too.
Ahead of the 2022 season, Deco-Pak has introduced an uplift in colour tones and a new logo for the EcoStone range to represent the true eco-nature of the product and packaging. Made with up to 60% of recycled material, all EcoStone bags will have a craft paper look to really set it apart from the other categories.
With multiple lockdowns and enforced distance from friends, family and much of our normal day-to-day lives, the importance of protecting mental health has come to the fore – in fact it is at an all-time high. According to one report, the global meditation market is expected to reach $9billion growth by 2027. As a result, many of us are now looking at ways to improve our mental health, with gardening proving a popular option as the estimated three million new gardeners* are testament to.
Water gardening is one area consumers are turning to as the benefits of being near water have been well documented. From lower stress levels and anxiety, to boosting physical and psychological wellbeing, water gardening is a great way to add interest and relaxing sounds to garden spaces, no matter their size. Deco-Pak’s water feature collection – set to be extended for the 2022 season – will help retailers to raise the bar when it comes to staging high impact displays of instant aquatics. Featuring many ‘plug and play’ options, the complete offering is supported by informative and inspirational point of sale to help appeal to time-pressed consumers who want to introduce the tranquil, calming effect of water to gardens and demand products that can be quickly installed and instantly spurred into action. Find out more at hole two.
Family & Community
The last 18 months has shown just how important the notion of family is. Whether they be relatives, friends or the wider community, we have all reached for those we hold dear. Since 2017, Deco-Pak’s Toy Town range of play pit and play sand – including coloured play sand are available to see at hole three – has been raising money for the children’s hospice garden charity, Greenfingers, and will continue to do so throughout the 2022 season. Talking about this product offering, Craig Hall said: “Greenfingers is such a fantastic cause which is needed by, and resonates with, everyone in our industry, and is one that we are so proud to support. Through the sales of our play sand, we aim to leave a lasting impression for the charity and help provide more gardens for children with life limiting illnesses and their families.”
with gardening growing in popularity, business confidence is increasing in turn. One area that is seeing an increase in consumer spend is home and garden improvement, with landscape essentials such as stepping-stones proving popular thanks to their ability to transform paths and long-forgotten corners of the garden. From leaves and timber to penny coins, paws, half crescent moons and rustic circles, the Deco-Pak range is extensive and offers styles for all tastes and garden designs all of which will be available to view on hole four.
The pandemic has brought new gardeners to the market, including many younger and inexperienced customers. As such it has never been so important for retailers to offer new ideas and inspiration at the point of sale. As a result, hole five will showcase Deco-Pak’s new point of sale support, which is designed to showcase what can be achieved quickly and easily to drive up the average basket spend and build consumer confidence. New ‘get the look’ aggregate merchandising solutions will deliver quick, visual cues that demonstrate how products can be easily used to maximum effect with minimum effort.
Growing demand has placed unprecedented pressure on the supply chain, with retailers and manufacturers both having to quickly adapt to changing sales patterns. Improved service and logistics will be key in ensuring a smooth path through the 2022 season. One key update for Deco-Pak will feature on hole six – new quad rockery crates for the market-leading Rock & Roll range of rockery and boulder essentials.
Deco-Pak and customers are on course for an exciting 2022!
Deco-Pak and customers are on course for an exciting 2022
We are delighted to be able to meet face-to-face at Glee 2021, the Deco-Pak team has had plenty to talk about at the show so far, whilst also showcasing a host of exciting new developments set to help retailers grow their business in the coming year. Director Craig Hall talks more about the important themes on stand (6H50-J51) this year and what you can expect from 2022.
Always keen to keep it fresh and fun, Deco-Pak will be showcasing its new launches in a very different way at Glee 2021. Visitors to the stand will be invited to play a round of miniature golf, navigating the crazy course of 2021 and overcoming challenges in order to head into a more stable 2022; a year packed full of opportunity, the company promises.
Craig Hall discusses the theme of the stand a bit further, explains how the business has prioritised listening closely to the market and its customers, and in turn, planned very carefully to arm retailers with everything they need to hit a winner next year.
Sustainability has been a key driver of innovation across garden categories, with eco-savvy consumers demanding more from their suppliers and retailers. Deco-Pak has identified this as a key trend, which will continue to shape the market going forward.
“As a company, we recognise how important this movement is and want our customers need to have an offer that meets, if not exceeds, consumer expectations. We expect the demand for eco-gardening products to continue, which is why we’ve invested in our Ecostone range. We have revamped the packaging to maximise consumer engagement and sales potential. The update means the packaging is now made with up to 60% recycled material and sports a craft paper look, which gives it an authentic feel and really sets it apart from other categories. We have also given the logo and colour tones on the bag an uplift in order to reflect the true eco nature of the product and its packaging. We expect this change to really connect with eco-savvy gardeners.”Craig Hall, Marketing Director at Deco-Pak
“The Ecostone range has also been expanded for 2022 and now includes a large bag of Glasglo chippings. The sustainably-sourced 10-20mm decorative aggregate chippings, made from recycled glass from old TVs are now available in larger bags, thanks to an increase in recycling and grading of Cathode-ray tube TVs, which is a positive for the planet and for gardeners looking for eco-friendly chippings to use in pots, beds and borders, water features and on patios.”
Creating retail theatre with new POS
The pandemic and lockdown gave rise to an army of new gardeners and novices keen to tackle DIY projects in their outdoor spaces. Great news for the industry but also a time to re-think how we all communicate with this new demographic.
It is something Deco-Pak has given a lot of thought to and has put provisions in place to help retailers engage with these consumers and maximise sales opportunities.
Craig explains: “New younger consumers are seeking easy DIY projects to make their outdoor spaces more attractive and usable. We expect this trend to drive significant growth in the sector, which is why we have taken the decision to invest in our POS. The use of inspirational imagery on point-of-sale material really helps to inspire all generations, no matter their level of gardening expertise. The ‘Instagram generation’ expects ideas and inspiration from brands and retailers. They are seeking out visual triggers that can be turned quickly into purchase decisions that relate to their own circumstances. Our new ‘get the look’ aggregate merchandising solutions will capture that potential by demonstrating how products can be easily used to maximum effect with minimum effort.”
The updated POS sits in line with product packaging, providing shoppers with a cohesive message and appearance, which is crucial. “The new POS boards now sit in harmony with the product packaging to create a natural flow,” adds Craig. “To inspire consumers, we have invested in new photography, as well as simplifying messages to keep clear and concise information delivery
Experienced sales representatives from the industry
Something that hasn’t changed for 2022 is the people. You can still count on a sea of friendly faces waiting to greet you on the Deco-Pak stand at Glee, with that expert team ready to support your business in any way they can, providing consistent communication and helping you to generate more sales and expand your offer. The people, the passion and the products are what make Deco-Pak stand out from the crowd and why retailers love working with the company.
“We know what value our sales team bring to the business,” says Craig. “As well as experienced sales agents, Deco-Pak has always been proud to have a strong representation of dedicated sales account managers from the gardening industry, who have built strong ties with customers to understand their expectations and requirements.”
Driving greater efficiency across the business
The phrases “unprecedented demand” or “unprecedented challenges” have rung out across the industry over the past 18 months, putting enormous pressure on everyone within the supply chain. Businesses have had to learn fast and implement new strategies to ensure steady supply and stock availability in the face of further obstacles. Forgive another golfing reference but, it’s time to get out of the rough and onto the fairway, which is exactly what Deco-Pak is aiming for in 2022, with its customers set to reap the rewards of investments made and plans put in place.
“We have invested in new machinery in order to offer higher fulfilment,” Craig says. “We’ve introduced three further packing filling lines, which will allow us to be more flexible and respond quickly to changing patterns in demand. Our site in has also undergone a major reorganisation and expansion, with a view to increasing our stockholding. Work included the yard being renovated and extended, so that we can now hold 40% additional stock and keep even more lines available for our retailers when they need them.”
An important part of the puzzle is about relationships and securing strong ties and agreements with supplier partners. That is what helps Deco-Pak deliver the level of service its customers have come to expect. To maintain that the team has been hard at work behind the scenes. Craig explains: “As well as listening to our retail partners, we have continued to work even more closely with all of our suppliers – whether manufacturers, hauliers or exporters. We have not only communicated better but also secured transport agreements and invested in manufacturing equipment to strengthen the entire supply chain.”
Craig concludes: “We do hope you’ll join us on stand for a round of mini golf. It has been a crazy year-and-a half, and I think we all need a bit of fun, but we would also relish the chance to reconnect with you all and tell you about the exciting plans we have in store for 2022. We listened to the market… we know what you need, and we’ve responded, so come and find out more.”