Brand Strategy: Repositioning Commodities
Even producers in the commodity world of meats and produce have found ways to reposition themselves and thus create a unique selling proposition. Their successful strategies can be summed up in five ways.
1. Identify. Ordinary bananas became better bananas when a small Chiquita label was added to the fruit. Dole did the same for pineapple with the Dole label, as did the lettuce people by putting each head into a clear Foxy lettuce package. Of course, you then have to communicate why people should look for these labels.
2. Personify. The Green Giant character became the difference in a family of vegetables in many forms. Frank Perdue became the tough man behind the tender chicken.
3. Create a new generic.The cantaloupe people wanted to differentiate a special, big cantaloupe. But rather than call them just plain “big,” they introduced a new category called Crenshaw melons. Tyson wanted to sell miniature chickens, which doesn’t sound very appetizing. So it introduced Cornish game hens.
4. Change the name. Sometimes your original name doesn’t sound like it would be something you would want to put in your mouth. Like a Chinese gooseberry. When the name was changed to kiwi fruit, the world suddenly had a new favorite fruit that it wanted to put in its mouth.
5. Reposition the category. Pork was just pig for many years. All that did was conjure up mental pictures of animals wallowing in the mud. Then the industry jumped on the chicken bandwagon and became “the other white meat.” That was a very good move when red meat became a perceptual problem.
Excerpted from my book REPOSITIONING: Marketing In An Era of Competition, Change, And Crisis – Jack Trout with Steve Rivkin (c) 2010 by McGraw-Hill
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