chew on this

General Mills is Banking On New Flavors, Products and Grumpy Cat to Boost Sales

Posted by Dale Buss on July 10, 2014 04:29 PM

General Mills says it’s going to try hard to revive US cereal sales, but the CPG giant isn’t going to be content with re-inventing the wheel: The company also is investing heavily in a variety of other new products, in marketing to Millennials and in expanding its distribution in convenience stores and foodservice locations.

The company, like Kellogg's, has been stymied by a steady decline in sales of their traditional staple, ready-to-eat cereal. So part of its answer is to exploit more eat-away-from-home occasions where General Mills brands and products have never been a big part of the menu. C-stores have become a main target.

“Many of our snack items leverage our US retail brands and offer different formats and flavors specifically for our convenience-store customers,” said Bethany Quam, the company’s newly named president of convenience stores and foodservice, in a recent investor presentation.Continue reading...

brand news

In the News: Oscars, Coke, Pepsi and more

Posted by Dale Buss on February 11, 2011 09:00 AM

In the News

Academy Awards command pricier ad market.

Apple’s Steve Jobs is still calling the shots from home, as news leaks of cheaper and more versatile iPhones.

Blockbuster is heading towards a sale.

Coca-Cola reports 4th quarter and fully-year 2010 results.

Coca-Cola and PepsiCo grapple with negative research on diet soda and strokes.

Fiat CEO Sergio Marchionne is called on the carpet with Italian Prime Minister.Continue reading...

package design

Souping Up Packaging by Kicking the Can

Posted by Barry Silverstein on January 20, 2011 04:00 PM

Conventional marketing wisdom suggest that soup was the perfect recession-beater; after all, what could top an inexpensive meal in a can?

But marketing experts may have a little egg on their faces as they review statistics indicating U.S. soup sales have actually dipped by 14% since 2008. In fact, unit sales of ready-to-serve soup have declined 10% since 2008, according to research firm SymphonyIRI Group.

That may be why, in an effort to stimulate a rebound, soup giant Campbell tried to shake up the flagging soup category with the introduction of newly branded V8 soups in 2008, packaged in boxes. And why, last September, the canny company launched a $100 million integrated marketing campaign with the theme "It's Amazing What Soup Can Do" to re-cast its image. 

Now a small New England soup company hopes to turn up the heat on its bigger rival. New England Country Soup is trying its own brand turnaround of a different sort, attempting to do an end run around category giants like Campbell's Soup and Progresso.

The company, which introduced its products in 2008, has actually seen sales grow since then to $4 million and is now carried in some 2,000 stores east of the Mississippi, reports the Boston Globe. One of the reasons? It has kicked out the can.Continue reading...

brand news

In the News: Audi, Dell, General Mills and more

Posted by Dale Buss on November 19, 2010 09:00 AM

In the News

Apple brings iAd mobile-marketing platform to Europe.

Audi launches iPad app for its flagship A8 sedan.

Dell prospers from corporate PC sales.

Delta workers again reject unionization.

General Mills counts on efficiency to improve marketing of Progresso soups and other brands.

GM buzzes with success on its first day back in the public market.

Google launches interactive book to teach about the web.Continue reading...

truth in advertising

Escalating Ad Wars Lead To The Courtroom

Posted by Abe Sauer on November 23, 2009 12:54 PM

After grabbing myself a slice at World-Famous Original Ray's Pizza, I wanted to find all the news that was fit to print, and was surprised by a New York Times piece on the sharp increase in brands suing each other over false claims.

So far, 2009 has seen 82 formal complaints over ad claims, according to The National Advertising Division of the Council of Better Business Bureaus, on track to exceed last year’s record of 84 challenges, up almost 40% from four years ago.

While the "studies show" tactic of demonstrating one brand's superiority over competitors is an ad cliché, those ads typically have used "other leading brands" as their contrast. Now, increasingly ruthless competition has seen brands outright naming, and denouncing, competitors. These lawsuits include DirectTV's claim about Charter Communication's service. Or AT&T's complaint, after Verizon Wireless attacked their spotty coverage with their mocking tagline, "There's a map for that."Continue reading...

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