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P&G Scrubs Out Tide Basic

Posted by Barry Silverstein on June 24, 2010 11:00 AM

Last July, branding powerhouse Procter & Gamble tried appealing to budget-conscious consumers with a value-priced version of Tide detergent called Tide Basic. The product was carried by Wal-Mart and Kroger stores, primarily in the south and southwestern parts of the United States.

Tide Basic was essentially a test to see if stripping out some of Tide's features and pricing it as much as twenty percent lower than original Tide would make the product more attractive. It was seen as a strategy to compete with the growing popularity of store brands and generics.

P&G has announced it has ended the test and will pull Tide Basic from the market. Why?

Within the last year, P&G relaunched another of its detergent brands, Cheer, at a new lower price, so that could be one of the reasons the company is discontinuing Tide Basic.

Another reason may be that the 60-year old Tide franchise is one of P&G's strongest brands.

Famous for its line extensions, P&G has steadily grown the Tide product family from powdered detergent to liquids, adding stain release, washing machine cleaner, "Tide To Go" instant cleaner, Tide laundry accessories, and most recently, "Swash by Tide," a line of spray-on clothes fresheners. In July, Tide will launch an overhaul of liquid Tide.

It's likely P&G didn't think undermining any of the Tide products with a value-priced Basic version was a good long-term strategy. Yet P&G has tested and retained other slimmed down products, such as Charmin Basic (toilet paper) and Bounty Basic (paper towels) in an effort to solidify market share.

The company is renowned for its branding acumen — so you can be certain P&G will continue to test and refine its products in an effort to keep consumers interested.

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