Industry Update: 20.01.2021

Vertical: Wholesale
Type: B2B
Covid Impact on Demand: Positive
Covid Impact on Ability to Supply: Negative
Viable Transition/Readjustment: Yes

We’re just ordinary people.

The business world now recognises that pandemic conditions are here to stay.

SoPro have direct access to several hundred B2B marketing operations, spanning 60+ verticals. In recent weeks we have seen major movement in global sentiment, shifting from defensive tactics to proactive strategy as realisation sets in.

We are now witnessing the largest and most complex change management project in the history of humankind.

The worlds businesses are rapidly readjusting to compete in a new world. Here’s how.

Wholesale, what are we seeing?

We are seeing considerable fluctuations in the wholesale market with distributors addressing specific demand increases from retailers operating in a quickly changing retail environment.

Many wholesalers have lost significant customer traffic with many stores and restaurants being closed at present. Some independents are thriving, closing their shops and operating last mile deliveries, or pivoting e.g. florists selling flowers from bakeries, pubs operating as delis.

Others are struggling as the supply of in-demand products continues to be an issue.

Many wholesalers are pursuing a short term transition to B2C models, implementing direct to consumer sales platforms and propositions. These are large, timely and expensive projects in most cases so not all wholesalers will consider the commercial justification to be there, unless a significantly extended lockdown period is confirmed.

What do these businesses need to do now?

1. Adjust your business targeting

We are seeing significant changes to targeting in the wholesale market, as consumer patterns change because of COVID-19, traditional wholsesale customers close shop or pivot, charities and the health sector are starting to require different supply chains to compensate.

2. Review your marketing channels
B2B Direct Mail




Paid Search


Tradeshows and Exhibitions


Awards Circuit


Door to door sales


Word of mouth


Social Media


Digital Outreach i.e. B2B prospecting


3. Revise your proposition

Set out how you have adjusted to a post COVID-19 World.

We are seeing wholesale distributors targeting a wider range of customers, accentuating lead times, capacity, flexibility, speed, price, quality, geographical coverage and cold chain capabilities.

It is also important to address COVID-19 safety measures you are taking including staff safeguarding and physical protective packaging of food.

Consider adding traditional consumer side customers to your service model, retail is failing to satisfy consumer demand right now so if you can transition fast the customers are definitely there, and often in urgent need of a solution.


4. Revise your messaging

Set out how your proposition directly contributes to overcoming the current challenges.

Talk about the advantages which you can offer right now majoring on any that address the COVID-19 high demand products e.g. the opportunity to sell family size packages and longer-life products as consumers shop less frequently.

Touch on capturing and servicing unmet demand.

Focus on robust distribution models and ability to supply now.

Set out attractive commercial terms if able.

5. Drop the experts a line

At SoPro, business growth is what we do, and we've got the tech and team to quickly generate a healthy pipeline for your business. Our expert team are ready to discuss your campaign today.

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