This is the next in our series of Supply Side Innovators featured in our Bake Twentyfive issue. Each weekday, we will spotlight a new Supply Side Innovator that can help you create the flavors, textures, and designs your customers will love.

Instore made products are the primary method for bakeries to differentiate themselves from their competitors. By capitalizing on current trends and building displays to showcase these designs, retail stores are able to build a relationship with consumers that will bring them back for all their bakery needs, says Rhonda Delaney, vice president of sales and merchandising for Lawrence Foods.

“Unfortunately, personnel turnover continues to be an obstacle for bakeries,” she says. “Training new employees is a challenge. While many bakeries are turning to prepackaged goods, Lawrence Foods has developed an easy, user-friendly method to assist with this problem. Our training video library consists of over 65 videos that take only minutes to watch — yet offer thorough step-by-step instructions for everything from production tips to the most recent trends customers are seeing on social media.”

Younger generations entering the workforce learn visually through technology. Google reports that when learning something new, millennials are 2.7 times more likely to prefer to do so by watching a YouTube video compared to reading a book, Delaney says.

Lawrence Foods is capitalizing on this through the use of training videos hosted on YouTube. To make these videos accessible to customers, Lawrence Foods utilizes multiple modes of delivery. Customers can access the Lawrence Foods library of videos via its website, web links and QR Codes.

QR Codes have proven to lead the way with end users, she adds. The ease and convenience of scanning a QR Code has resulted in significant success with retailers. Lawrence Foods is able to offer customers data from the scanned QR Codes — “how many of their employees are utilizing these tools, what time of day they were used, along with so much more.”

In addition, Lawrence Foods offers complete training programs to be used in conjunction with the training videos. These can be used in large group settings for seminars or with individuals in a one-on-one type setting.

In today’s digital world, ecommerce is becoming more prevalent, Delaney points out. IRI reports that 77% of all purchasing decisions for consumer packaged goods starts online. “Cake orders can be made with the click of a button and famous bakeries will ship their cakes across the country,” she says. “This further proves the importance of creating differentiation from the competition.”

Fast facts

Lawrence Foods has a team of technical experts ranging from merchandising and marketing specialists to one of the leading R&D teams in the industry. The sales and marketing team creates all of the training videos in house. This allows Lawrence Foods to create custom content specific to the needs of its customers.

In addition, Lawrence Foods recently expanded its warehousing facilities. Along with the additional storage capacities the new warehouse provides, the company is currently in the process of building a training facility to serve customers.