20 Things to Consider When Preparing a Minimum Advertised Price (MAP) Policy - Part 2
MAP Policy Part Two: So. Many. Acronyms. MAP vs. iMAP vs. eMAP vs. MSRP
The acronyms thrown around in connection with a MAP policy are enough to make your head spin. During this week’s MAP policy blog post, Vorys eControl sets it straight and also identifies what to think about from a resourcing perspective as your company evaluates whether to launch or revamp a MAP policy. For a refresher on MAP policy basics, check last week’s post here.
6. MAP vs. iMAP? That is the question. A broader MAP policy covers both off-line and online advertising, whereas an iMAP (internet minimum advertised price) or eMAP (electronic-only minimum advertised price) policy covers only online advertising. The pros of having a broader MAP policy is that if you happen to see an ad on a paper mailing (or hear an ad on the radio) that violates the policy, you can take action against the offending reseller; with only an iMAP policy, however, you do not have such recourse.
7. MAP vs. MSRP? The “MAP” is the minimum advertised price that a reseller is permitted to advertise your product pursuant to your policy’s terms. The “MSRP” is the manufacturer’s suggested retail price. Some companies set their MAP at the MSRP, whereas other companies set their MAPs as a percentage off of the MSRP or a certain amount per product less than the MSRP. Prior to launching a MAP policy, the company should be clear on what it wants the MAP and the MSRP to be for the products subject to the MAP policy.
8. The Products “On MAP.” Think about the 80/20 rule: what are your most important or popular products? What are your hero SKUs? What new products are coming out this year? Companies should consider what products to make subject to a MAP policy from a business perspective, with lower-priced commodity products generally not being suitable for a MAP policy.
9. MAP Monitoring Software. A MAP monitoring provider will give you data on the actual advertised prices for the top internet hits for your products so you can see if they are violating your minim advertised price. To minimize the company’s legal risk, it is important that the company administer the MAP policy. While you can monitor MAP without one, many MAP monitoring providers have tools and platforms to make the day-to-day administration easier. Spend some time doing demos with a few providers before making a decision to formally engage a MAP monitoring provider.
10. MAP Administration Resourcing. It is important to have a dedicated individual (or small group of individuals) to serve as the MAP Policy Administrator – and preferably this person is outside of sales to avoid misaligned incentives. The MAP Administrator is responsible for regularly reviewing data from your MAP monitoring company and enforcing your MAP policy, such as sending out notices and enacting violations. This administration does require some dedicated time and resources, so it is best to think ahead as to who in your company will serve that function or whether an additional hire is required.
Want to chat MAP? Please reach out to attorney Jessica Cunning at firstname.lastname@example.org or attorney Kate Early at email@example.com for a complimentary 30 minute virtual session. Jessica and Kate are both strategy leaders in the firm’s nationally recognized Vorys eControl practice, helping companies draft, implement, and execute workable MAP policies.
Want to learn more? Consider reading Vorys eControl’s white paper “The Winning Strategy for MAP Success and Long-Term Brand Value in the eCommerce Market” accessible here.