Brand activation in-store can so often be a tactic that feels relatively easy to fall back on when sales are looking a little low. And yet it can come with a high price tag, and under such pressured situations it is bound to have high expectations riding on it. So you need to have confidence that the activation planned will be as effective as possible. Of course, you can learn a lot from past sales data, in terms of which campaigns seemed to have the desired effect on shoppers. But unless controlled tests have been implemented (and we all know how difficult it is to create real control situations in retail), sales data can’t tell us which elements of a campaign are driving the successes or failure. So, whether the header, or the fin or the FSDU of any particular campaign were worth investing in or not is often a bit of a finger in the air estimate! And of course, using tactics in a blunt way often just produces a short-term blip in sales, rather than a sustained change in purchase behaviour or brand perceptions.