Tag Archives: Food

Amazon Buys Whole Foods’ Grocery Stores

By now you have likely heard about Amazon’s planned acquisition of Whole Foods for $13.4 billion. The combined companies will span the breadth of online shopping, and add 460 physical outposts in hundreds of communities across the United States.

The grocery business today accounts for approximately $800 billion in annual spending in the U.S. Yet, in its current form, Amazon has not been able to make a major inroad to selling groceries online. The Whole Foods purchase would give Amazon direct access to consumers, and their information, as they shop in stores for their foods. On average, groceries are purchased five times per month.

It seems somewhat incongruent that a 23-year old company funded on shopping over the Internet is now investing heavily in brick-and-mortar stores. Yet, Amazon has been opening some stores in select locations – bookstores and food-to-go. The combined companies would become the fifth largest grocery retailer, but only account for 3.5% of grocery spending in the U.S.

Where – and how – will you shop for groceries?

Group Activities and Discussion Questions:

  1. Discuss with class: Why did Amazon purchase Whole Foods?
  2. Which retailer(s) will be most pressed by this acquisition? Why?
  3. Discuss how grocery retailers will compete with the combined Amazon/Whole Foods.
  4. Is the Whole Foods acquisition a good move by Amazon?
  5. Discuss the four primary marketing strategies: market penetration, market development, product development, and diversification.
  6. Which strategy is Amazon using by purchasing Whole Foods? Why?

Source: New York Times, Wall Street Journal, other news sources

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World’s First Nutella Café

Fans of the hazelnut spread Nutella are very happy right now – at least they are if they live in or are visiting Chicago. While the company has often had pop-up stores in locations, it now has its first permanent café located on Michigan Avenue opposite Millennium Park in Chicago. This is the first restaurant that is owned and operated by the company, but it surely will not be its last.

Customers enter the store through a Nutella jar-shaped door, with light fixtures shaped like hazelnut flowers, and waves on the ceiling.  The new café has a specialty menu of food items that demonstrate the ways in which the beloved spread can be used. Picture (and smell) warm grilled baguettes with Nutella, roasted hazelnut and blueberry granola with yogurt, along with other dishes including salads, Paninis, and more.

The company view the new café as both a revenue stream as well as a prominent advertisement for the many qualities of Nutella spread. While other cafes are being considered in various locations, none have been formally announced.

Are you hungry yet?

Group Activities and Discussion Questions:

  1. Discuss favorite foods. Any Nutella lovers in the room?
  2. Discuss how food companies are expanding their reach in various ways (ex: pop-up cafes, Wienermobile, etc.)
  3. Show the Nutella Web site: https://www.nutella.com/en/us
  4. Show the Nutella Café Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/NutellaCafeChicago
  5. Ask students their opinion of the new café. How does this fit into an integrated marketing campaign.
  6. Divide students into teams. Have each team select a favorite food and come up with a similar way in which marketing could be expanded into consumer experiences.

Source:  Brandchannel.com

 

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Wienermobiles Drive Across America!

Have you ever seen the Wienermobile in person? It’s like seeing a famous celebrity – everyone stops and looks, takes a selfie, and smiles at the giant hot dog mobile. It’s a great rolling billboard that gets attention and promotes products.

The Wienermobile first began 80 years ago during the Depression as a way to promote product and make people smile. It’s gone through a number of style changes, but continues today with six vehicles and 12 official “Hotdoggers” who drive it and pass out dogs and smiles around the country. (More than 1,000 people applied last year for the 12 Hotdogger spots!)

This summer, the Wienermobiles are touring the country to spread the word about the reformulated hot dogs, now without any added nitrates, nitrites, artificial preservatives, or by-products. In addition to updating the products, Oscar Mayer is also using social media to engage consumers and help determine locations for the tour. Already visited was Whittier, Alaska, population 220, accessible via a 2.5 mile tunnel and icy roads

No word on the miles per gallon though (or does it run on mustard?).

Group Activities and Discussion Questions:

  1. Discuss the stages in the product life cycle. What are the marketing objectives in each stage?
  2. Divide students into teams. Have each team draw a product life cycle and place various products and services into each stage.
  3. Discuss hot dogs and where they are in the product life cycle.
  4. Show the Wienermobile Web site: http://www.oscarmayer.com/wienermobile
  5. Show a video of the Wienermobile in Alaska: https://youtu.be/3e_1Z_oxt5g
  6. Now, have students brainstorm on how to reposition or revise products/services to that they can move into an earlier stage of the life cycle.

Source:  Advertising Age

 

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