Grapevine, Texas - The Nationwide Marketing Group (NMG) kicked off its best-attended PrimeTime! buying show and member conference here last night at the Gaylord Texan outside Dallas.
Highlights of this week's 40
anniversary event include the introduction of a Nationwide-exclusive TV brand, Allegra, and the addition of D&H Distributing to its roster of fulfillment partners. D&H will expand the group's current PC and tablet assortment of Acer and Asus SKUs to also include Lenovo, Toshiba and, as of press time, Hewlett-Packard products, while Nationwide has also developed bundled tablet programs to help boost category margins.
Nationwide also presented the results of a consumer study by Britt Beemer of America's Research Group. According to NMG appliance merchandising senior VP Richard Weinberg, the "deep dive" into the buying habits of more than 1,000 appliance, furniture and bedding customers revealed how consumers shop, why they make their purchases and what they care about.
Beemer used the data to develop 30 top promotions for member dealers to help drive traffic and sales, and attendees also received a booklet at registration filled with "40 Great Ideas" to help boost business while commemorating the buying group's anniversary.
The show, which generated the largest turnout in NMG history, with 900 members companies and 3,500 attendees in total, also marks the PrimeTime! debut of the group's enhanced merchandising and marketing team. The lineup is now lead by GE Appliance veteran Dave Bilas and includes former Electrolux sales director Jeff Knock, who was recently appointed appliance marketing senior VP.
Also making its PrimeTime! debut is the group's new Nationwide Florida chapter, which voted to join NMG earlier this year.
Opening-night festivities included a performance by "American Idol" finalist Celena Rae, and introductory remarks by NMG CEO Robert Weisner.
"It's hard to believe we went from seven dealers to over 3,000 in seven years," Weisner told a packed ballroom. "We started by talking to vendors about a new tomorrow ... and you [the members] have made us what we are today."
Nationwide's show runs through Aug. 24.