Not surprisingly, Sainsbury, as official England supermarket, had a broad and well co-ordinated range of activity throughout the store, with lots of hanging banners communicating offers from tournament sponsors and non-sponsors alike. All point-of-sale followed a consistent corporate style with the chance to win prizes, cleverly linked into use of the Nectar Card scheme, thereby rewarding loyal customers.
Nestlé had used an interesting shot of Bobby Charlton with a very young David Beckham, nicely linking past and current heroes to add a bit more interest to their campaign.
There were plenty of World Cup merchandise displays, centred around the unique 'Football Heroes' collectables. Unlike previous campaigns, these were not handed out free with purchases, but were available on a three-for-two pack offer. However, given the range of collectables already on the market, you would have to query how much interest or incremental purchase this part of the campaign has generated.
From start to finish of the shopping trip, including the checkout staff proudly wearing their Three Lions shirts, you could be left in no doubt that Sainsbury was firmly embracing both the tournament and the England team. The key assessment post tournament will centre on the incremental returns and customer base versus the outlay made on being the official sponsor.
Verdict: Sainsbury's sponsorship of the England team has resulted in a very coherent, professional offering in-store, yet the suspicion remains that it has not fully capitalised on the opportunity versus the cost of the sponsorship. 75/100
Asda's theme of 'Love the Game' included PoS that genuinely got across the passion of fans. Wayne Rooney proudly fronts the whole campaign - what a relief he has made it to Germany. There were some nice touches - the themed half-time pizza offer, or the giant dribble sticker in the drinks aisle. However, overall it lacked cohesion, especially compared with the omnipresence of Sainsbury's offer and the scale of Tesco's.
Verdict: Best display of tactical nous.57/100
Somerfield may have suffered in this survey through having a smaller store assessed, even if it is Alan Shearer's local. While the bunting and first aisle feature reminded us that the tournament was on, there was little extra on offer from the retailer. The emphasis was on sponsors' on-pack and pricing offers.
Verdict: Biggest underachiever.43/100
Less corporate than the others but arguably more fun, Morrisons placed a strong emphasis on bunting and flags. This definitely created more of a party atmosphere. The theme of 'Festival of Football' and 'Burstin' with Offers', as well as the gondola end of merchandise with the 'Come on England' header, all supported this more down-to-earth, spontaneous feel. The special 'Bag 'n Bud' for £5, offering beer and curry, is surely the footie fan's dream.
Verdict: Definitely gets the prize for unbridled fun.67/100
Tesco's approach was a bit more measured than Sainsbury's - less PoS overall countered by massive foyer displays of beer and goods. It also seems to have been the only retailer to recognise that football is not to everyone's taste with its clever positioning of 'Love Football, Hate Football?' It was the only retailer to use a game card mechanic to reward shoppers for all purchases of more than £10.
Verdict: Individual flair player of the tournament.61/100
Waitrose's store in Durham is smaller than the others assessed and is, of course, not in its heartland. However, its one gondola end and shelf barker in support of Pringles on-pack offer seemed like a token gesture and surely an opportunity missed to broaden its customer base in the north.
Verdict: Possibly guilty of tokenism but not really its bag .(Offer too small)
?Marks & Spencer
M&S proudly led with a football theme on its sandwich fixture. While the food category carried some other theming, it remains very difficult to realistically compare it to the major grocers.
Verdict: Hard to assess.(Too small )
Stores visited by the FPP on 9 June: Tesco, Kingston Park; Sainsbury, Monkseaton; Asda, Benton; Morrisons, Whitley Bay; Somerfield, Ponteland; Waitrose, Durham; M&S, Northumberland Street, Newcastle. Each was assessed on approach, including foyer and car park, in-store PoS, staff participation and overall impression.