Tag Archives: Food

Christmas is in the Air!

Can you smell it? It’s that time of the year when Christmas is in the air! Oh, lift your face and smell the scent of fir trees, pine cones, fresh cold air, and KFC fried chicken in the air! Wait, what, KFC fried chicken in the air? That’s become a Christmas scent?

Yes, KFC decided that Christmas needs more food smells, particularly its famous fried chicken with 11 herbs and spices. To that end, the company recently sold out of its five-pound fire logs that were scented with fried chicken. Relax though, no chickens were harmed and none are burned as part of the fire logs, which are made out of recycled materials. The logs burn up to 2.5 to 3 hours and have a caution applied – burning it may result in a crazing for fried chicken (plus it may attract hungry bears or neighbors).

KFC isn’t the only company applying scents to the holidays. General Mills is also using scents in movie theaters to entice consumers for its Pillsbury cinnamon rolls. General Mills is using scent machines at 200 theaters to push out a subtle scent of freshly cooked cinnamon rolls during pre-show commercials.

Why the emphasis on scents in marketing? Studies have indicated that smell is strongly linked to memory recall. Consumers link scents to memories, making them more inclined to purchase products that generate happy memories.

What smells do you like?

Group Activities and Discussion Questions:

  1. Poll students: What are the scents of Christmas?
  2. Show the KFC yule log site: https://www.kfc.com/fire-log
  3. Show a video about KFC logs: https://youtu.be/b-4Yh8_4vZI
  4. Show the Pillsbury cinnamon theater commercial: https://youtu.be/z_ie4wdXyXM
  5. Divide students into teams.
  6. Have each team develop a marketing tactic using “scents” to improve branding and sales.
  7. What are the drawbacks to this type of marketing?

Source: Minneapolis Star Tribune, Entrepreneur, Ad Week, Fox News, other news sources

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Dunkin’ Drops the Donuts from its Branding

What’s the importance of a brand name? Brands have value. Brands help to define a company, its values and products, and branding builds an image in the minds of consumers. If a consumer hears “Nike,” or “North Face,” or “Luluemon” it immediate builds a picture in the consumer’s mind of that brand. So, when an established company undertakes rebranding, it had better be prepared for a lot of work and time to establish the new brand. The rebranding can be incredibly expensive and risky.

The latest rebranding is a move from “Dunkin’ Donuts” to just “Dunkin’.” The company claims that it has been on a first-name basis with its fan for a long time, and that its customers have long referred to the brand as Dunkin’, making this a natural fit. The original pink and orange colors of the logo, along with the original font, have been retained in the new logo, helping to retain the brand recognition.

Dropping the “Donuts” raises the question about whether Dunkin’ will be moving away from its core product in favor of a newer food menu (croissants, bagels?). The company claims that donuts are still a key focus for Dunkin’.

Dunkin’ isn’t the only brand to shorten its name. Recently, Weight Watchers shortened its name to WW, using the tagline “Wellness that Works” to help explain the rebranding. And, many people still erroneously refer to Kentucky Fried Chicken with its full name, even though it became KFC in the early 1990s.

It’s hard to change consumers’ habits.

Group Activities and Discussion Questions:

  1. Discuss the importance of branding.
  2. Using the Top 100 Global Brands list as reference, poll students about the top 10 global brands: https://www.interbrand.com/best-brands/best-global-brands/2018/ranking/.
  3. Which brands do they think have been able to gain mind share? How?
  4. View the Dunkin’ Donuts web site: https://www.dunkindonuts.com/en
  5. What should the company do to roll out the new brand standards to consumers?

Source:  Advertising Age, New York Times, other news sources

 

 

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Sam’s Club Now Goes Cashier Free

Amazon isn’t the only company working on reinventing the retail experience. While the Amazon Go stores have captured consumers’ attention and shoppers at its cashier-less grocery stores, it’s not the only retailer interested in using technology to improve the customer shopping experience. Walmart recently announced that it is opening Sam’s Club Now, also cashier-less, in Dallas. The company describes its new store as a “technology lab that doubles as a live, retail club.” At 32,000 square feet it isn’t quite a compact store, but it is significantly smaller than the typical Sam’s Club store.

Similar to Amazon Go, in order to shop at Sam’s Club Now, members will need to use a Sam’s Club app that allows customers to scan UPC codes as they shop and check themselves out when done shopping. The app also includes smart shopping lists, in-store voice search and maps, augmented reality for new in-store experiences, and one-hour pickup.

Employees don’t go away – they instead shift to a new role called the Member Host. These associates are the face of the company and will use technology to help them serve Sam’s Club members better. Sam’s Club stated that the “future of retail is as much about people as it is about technology.”

If you’re in Dallas, check it out.

Group Activities and Discussion Questions:

  1. Discuss the use of innovation throughout retail.
  2. Review Sam’s Club Now announcement and video: https://corporate.samsclub.com/blog/2018/10/29/sams-club-now-reimagining-the-future-of-retail
  3. Compare this with Amazon Go: https://www.amazon.com/b?ie=UTF8&node=16008589011
  4. What are the similarities, and differences, between the two services?
  5. How should the two companies position against each other?

Source:  Advertising Age, New York Times, other news sources

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