Late in January, when the Wegmans grocery chain confirmed that it planned to build a store in the Raleigh-Durham-Chapel Hill "Triangle" area of North Carolina, local residents got excited—really excited.
Autumn is defined as much by the crisp beauty of its weather as by the sudden chill it can bring, driving you inside to warm up your hands and belly.British grocery chain Waitrose and agency adam&eveDDB capture the seasonal tradition of enjoying, enduring and then escaping the weather in its new ad encouraging you to "Make This Autumn the Warmest Season."
The grocery game, already led by a handful of corporations with sprawling brand portfolios, is about to get a beefier new player.Kraft Foods and Heinz announced today they will merge to form The Kraft Heinz Company, with an estimated $28 billion in annual revenue and eight $1 billion brands.
Food marketers are constantly experimenting with crazy flavors to get consumers to try new products. Those gimmicks are successfully piquing shoppers' interest (regardless of how something actually tastes), according to new findings from uSamp.
Sure, megachains like Whole Foods and Trader Joe's can pull off a hip, millennial-savvy vibe. But what about those old-school regional grocers?Lowes Foods, with around 100 locations in the Carolinas and Virginia, recently gave Winston-Salem, N.C., agency The Variable the task of creating a brand image that breaks most of the usual grocery conventions."It's not every day that a client asks you to help them rethink an entire category, much less their entire business," said David Mullen, director of account management for The Variable. "It's been thrilling to partner with the Lowes Foods team to create a new and unique in-store experience, and then market it in provocative ways that stand out in a category known for playing it safe."The agency describes the new look and tone as "if Pixar created a grocery store, but talked about itself the way BuzzFeed would." The rebrand has rolled out to 14 locations so far, and more are in transition.Check out some of the grocery store's ads and in-store designs below:
Christmas storytelling is an annual rite of advertising one-upsmanship in Britain. But how can you weave a heart-warming tale while still keeping your product front and center?U.K. grocery chain Waitrose has found one solution by focusing on something that differentiates its staff. Employee-shared ownership in the company, which would normally be the driest of dry topics, takes a charming turn in the store's new holiday spot from BBH London. A real employee, Adejumoke Sanusi of Ilford, was even cast to play herself.The ad follows the story of an introverted young woman tackling a holiday baking challenge for school. Unlike the fantastical whimsy of advertisers like John Lewis, this ad is far more grounded in the reality of why you'd actually need to turn (time and again) to a helpful grocery clerk. It likely won't leave you wiping tears from your eyes, but on the other hand, you'll probably at least remember what was being advertised.By the way, the soundtrack comes from an interesting source: Members of the public joined a "Donate Your Voice" effort to create the track, a cover of Dolly Parton's "Try." The song is available for purchase on iTunes, with proceeds going to three U.K. charities.
British supermarket chain Sainsbury's had a bit of an awkward social media moment this week, when a customer noticed a sign encouraging employees to squeeze patrons for more money.
We all know we're being manipulated every time we shop, but it can still be unnerving to see the true extent of mind games being played on us.That's why I was fascinated (and mildly traumatized) to browse through a recent Reddit thread called, "What marketing tricks do we unknowingly fall for?"While not all the respondents are experts in pricing strategy or marketing psychology, many of them experience it on the front lines as both shoppers and retail employees. While the whole Reddit post is worth a read, we pulled a few of the more notable tactics that are as insidious as they are inescapable:1. The Instant MarkdownGetty ImagesWhy wait for a holiday sale when you can find big markdowns pretty much any day of the week? Discount retailers and Amazon have made day-one markdowns so common, they're popping up all over.Redditor chriz2fer sums up the tactic pretty simply: "Retail price $139.99. Our price $49.99." While tantalizing as a customer, all you're really seeing with such a strategy is how far below MSRP a retailer is willing to go while still turning a profit. As we saw with popular fashion delivery service Stitch Fix recently, retailers who offer steep discounts and source products from the same wholesalers can be a risky proposition.
As the tulips pop and the winter garb is tucked away in the backs of closets, some of the brands that gave us our biggest ad hits of the week looked forward to the summer days ahead. Others touched on important topics in ways that surprised and inspired. And they spanned the globe, from the U.S. to the U.K. to Brazil, sometimes in the same ad.
These days, ladies are all about the labels in the grocery store. With the help of mobile devices and coupons, they tend toward the healthiest food at the best prices, and are swayed by packaging that promotes fresh and low-fat ingredients.