21 Jul 11 The British egg market – an incubator of innovation
Eggs have always been difficult to market because on the surface there’s not much difference between them, but in the UK a number of interesting innovations have come out of the seemingly unglamorous egg market.
Despite cereal’s dominance, egg consumption is once again on the rise. But suppliers are suffering from an increase in feed prices and an oversupply of eggs, therefore there is still a lot of pressure on the industry to jump-start consumption. In fact, when you compare the UK to other western countries, it seems there’s room for the category to grow. Britons eat on average 147 shell eggs per person, per year, whereas Americans eat 169, the French 172 and Australians a whopping 196.
Eggs aren’t particularly convenient and they have been subject to concerns over salmonella and cholesterol. They differ from other branded products because they have high market saturation. Most people eat eggs and those that don’t refuse to because they’re allergic or simply don’t like them. So it’s not really a case of bringing new consumers into the fold.
Instead brand owners have focused on promoting formats and usage occasions to drive volume and adding value by creating compelling new brand propositions. As a result a rather humble staple has become a hub for some significant innovations.
Tactic 1: Increase Volume
Eggs can be found lurking in most kitchens, but their position as a staple makes them recessive, they are a supporting act rather than the main event. Brand owners therefore have to work hard to convince consumers of egg’s versatility in order to increase the volume of sales…… [read more on Popsop]
Tactic 2: Increase Margins
On the continent private label tends to get pride of place on the supermarket shelves. However, in Britain retailers have a more flexible attitude towards high-value brands, giving suppliers leeway to create new and compelling propositions that add value and grow the category.
Free Range is no longer a differentiating factor. Barn, Free Range and Organic eggs represent nearly half of Noble’s stocks and once new EU laws come into effect in January 2012, battery farming will be a thing of the past. So brands have had to go above and beyond ‘free range’ to really create a strong point of difference…… [read more on Popsop]
By creating carefully considered brands these diverse strategies are likely to boost sales further and for longer than a catchy strapline could on its own. Overall, eggs are a great example of how to take a fairly unexciting staple and creatively brand it building what is now a really dynamic category.
In fact, milk could learn something from egg branding. Aside from a few clever ads, little of interest is going on in the world of milk branding. Yes, brands have attempted to set themselves apart through purity, lactose fee and organic claims, but the category remains confused. However, the egg category has shown that by being more authentic and adventurous in the way that you market farm staples, you can really capture the consumer’s imagination.
Popsop Brand Magazine Online: Read more
New SA egg marketing campaign
The Southern African Poultry Association (SAPA) has launched a campaign, ‘Eggs are Magic’, aimed at promoting the health benefits of eggs as a nutritious, wholesome and affordable food source.
Directed at school children and their moms, the campaign features a through-the-line mix combining activations and industrial theatre, competitions, mobile media, radio and giveaways, all of which are designed to showcase the versatility of eggs.
“To get the message across that eggs are good for you, we have adopted a two pronged approach that reaches out to children on the one hand and their parents on the other,” says Masanda Peter, brand manager at SAPA. “The communication channel mix further entrenches the ways in which we reach those markets to get our message across.”
Peter says school activations will be taking place in the Western Cape, KwaZulu-Natal, Limpopo and the Eastern Cape. Mpilo, the ‘Eggs are Magic’ superhero and his team will visit schools in light delivery vehicles and trailers with the distinctive yellow and purple ‘Eggs are Magic’ branding.
“The team puts on its industrial theatre piece, a performance which serves to entertain the kids as well as educate and inform. During the visit, the team also hands out boiled eggs with a comic book that illustrates the nutritional information and benefits of South Africa’s most affordable source of protein in a language that the pupils understand.”
To reach the parents, Peter says a high profile radio campaign will be flighted, supported below the line with the use of branded taxi advertising, where consumers stand a chance to win cash, airtime and kitchen appliances, entering via SMS.
“We have also included stokvel activations for mothers, where they’ll get a DVD and recipe book that showcases the magic and versatility of eggs, not only as a breakfast meal but a healthy alternative that can be enjoyed any time of the day,” she concludes.