What was big at Expo West this year? Here are three large themes running through this year’s 16,000 products on the show floor: Continue reading “Expo West 2019 Trend Report”
Category: Brand Strategy
In Crossing the Chasm, author Geoffrey Moore made a compelling case that trends and products don’t grow seamlessly up a bell curve. Rather, they hit a chasm in the growth curve between the early adopters and the mainstream market. Early adopters want to try everything new in a market and they want to be the people others turn to for advice on what’s good. But the mainstream market isn’t interested in risk. They want to know that the pioneers have taken the risk, safely “crossed the chasm” (where most new products fall), and the reward is now theirs for the taking.
While Moore’s adoption curve was written with new technologies in mind, marketers have found it applies to any growing market. And at 2018’s Expo East, New Hope’s VP of Business Insights, Eric Pierce, and Nielsen’s VP Growth and Strategy, Sarah Schmansky, shared their insights into developing ingredient trends in the natural products market. On one axis of their exploration of trends from birth to maturity are ingredients that have achieved broad adoption. Think almonds, coconut and kale. The other axis is defined by growth of purchase. Think moringa, maca and ashwaganda. These ingredients are embraced by a small group of early adopters, but will the mainstream market ever evolve for them? The trick for manufacturers, retailers and investors is where on that spectrum does one invest time, energy and resources?
Just as in any market, there are opportunities for success all along the adoption spectrum. Here are a few brands exhibiting at Expo East that offer strong appeal to both the early adopter and mainstream segments of the adoption curve. Continue reading “Placing Our Bets at Expo East”
“Hope is more verb than noun. Become hope, and take action.” – Anna Lappé
Hope and action are two words that truly embody the spirit of Natural Products Expo West, the annual event that has spurred both dramatic and lasting change in the CPG category globally. Now in its 38th year, the event drew more than 85,000 attendees to the Anaheim Convention Center March 7th-11th – including more that 3,500 exhibiting companies. Increasingly, Expo West has become a convergence point for the entire supply chain – from producers and regulators to investors, manufacturers, distributors and retailers. But it’s consumers that truly wield the power.
The internet and industry is still aflutter over Sunday’s showing of Super Bowl ads. And, of course, all eyes are on the brand that turned every one of those spots into a marketing play of their own. Yep. This is a Tide post.
The series of spots was a smart approach, one that hijacked the commercial-watching holy day. It cleverly drew viewers into the concept, and tricked them into think about Tide during each and every spot, no matter the advertiser.
During last year’s election season, we heard pundits and politicians bemoan the effect of algorithms on what news we see, serving up content that reinforces and echoes choices and preferences we’ve demonstrated through past behavior. Because I happened to watch the Billy Bush bus video, does that make me a Trump supporter? Or if I happened to get click-baited into watching a shark video, does some data engine tag me as an Animals Attack! fan? The answer to those questions appears to be, largely, “yes” and therein lies a problem for our society (we are confined to a machine-determined perspective) and for practitioners of CPG marketing. Is media fragmentation making it harder and harder to create broadly popular CPG brands? Continue reading “Advertising In Echo Chambers”
“Consumer trust is something you have to earn every day. The day you start taking that for granted, it’s over.”
– Denise Morrison, CEO of Campbell Soup Company
This note of caution – equal parts somber and energizing – set the tone for the 37th annual Natural Products Expo West, the world’s largest natural, organic and healthy products event. Held at the Anaheim Convention Center March 9-12, a record-setting crowd of 85,000 attendees gathered to celebrate and support the more than 3,100 exhibiting brands – and to reflect on the critical role that consumers have played in the rapid rise of the better-for-you segment.
If you spend any time in CPG product innovation, you’re likely using a “Jobs To Be Done” (JTBD) approach. Created by Harvard Business School professor and disruptive innovator Clayton Christensen, the JTBD approach simply suggests people don’t buy products, they hire them to do specific jobs. Continue reading “A Rejuvenating Plunge Into Innovation”
I am bombarded by content claiming to provide me with the insight to unlock the mystery that is marketing to Millennials. Born between 1981 and 1997, Millennials formed a crest of childbirths of 66 million during those years, considerably higher than the 55 million Gen Xers that came before, if not quite the pig in a python that was the Baby Boom at 76 million. Continue reading “Unchanging Man And The Lizard Inside”
“Good, fast, cheap — pick any two” is a common phrase that defines the constraints on any initiative. If used as a lens through which to view the post-war packaged food industry, “fast and cheap” was clearly the choice of U.S. manufacturers and consumers. Indeed, the USDA reported that we spend significantly less on food than our grandparents did. Continue reading “Good, Fast, Cheap”
Apple recently announced a partnership with Nike, linking its Apple Watch with the Nike+ running app. I wish more collaboration between tech giants, food and beverage manufacturers and grocery retailers were keeping nutrition apps apace. Continue reading “Optimizing Nutrition Apps for Broad Consumer Adoption”