UNITED BISCUITS CASE STUDY THE REPOSTIONING OF HOBNOBS
INTRO OF UB International foods business operating in 24 countries. Manufactures, markets and distributes biscuits, savoury snacks and frozen and chilled foods. One of its famous products is McVitie’s.
AIM OF CASE STUDY Examine the way in which McVities has recently repositioned Hobnobs to target them at a younger audience of 18-34 year olds, as well as maintaining its established audience of consumers who like to treat themselves to high quality biscuits.
BACKGROUND OF BISCUIT MARKET Everyday Biscuits - the reasonable quality and price. Everyday Treats - still considered within a price range that they can be consumed every day. These are slightly more indulgent products. Special Treats - not likely to be consumed on a daily basis. Healthy Biscuits - offer a healthy alternative. Biscuit Variety Packs - an assortment of biscuits in a tin or box. Chocolate Biscuit Bars - this category includes all biscuits which are fully covered in chocolate and individually wrapped. Childrens Biscuits - this category considers younger consumers. Crackers - savoury biscuits which, on 50% of the occasions, are consumed with a third party product. Savoury Nibbles - a savoury product which is eaten alone on 50% of occasions.
HOBNOBS Hobnobs (original) were launched in 1986, closely followed by the two chocolate Hobnob variants in 1988. Following the highly successful launch of the original biscuits, McVities decided to build on the strength of the brand. The famous Hobnob name was then extended to Hobnob bars (a new countline) in 1989. Hobnob Creams were launched in 1992 and much more recently, Hobnob Flapjacks in April 1997. Originally, Hobnobs were positioned to take advantage of their homebaked taste where the appeal of the biscuit was its oaty, crumbly, wholesomeness. over 35 years old 50% male and 50% female.
MARKET RESEARCH RESULTSMarket research has revealed that Hobnobs: have the highest proportion of male consumers of any McVities biscuit have the highest proportion of consumers under 35 years of age have a high brand awareness do not rely heavily on McVities endorsement to sell the product, rather they are able to act as a stand-alone brand a key feature of the product is its nobble effect’ sell particularly well as a complement to soft drinks.
NEW MARKETING STRATEGY Target young adults in the 18-34 age range with a fun, sociable, humorous brand relevant to their lifestyle (i.e. one which involves the enjoyment of life, on the move). The brands purpose is to bring more interest, fun and entertainment to the biscuit market Provide a relevant offering for younger adults, who make up the post-teenage and pre-traditional biscuit consumer.The journey from repositioning the brand away from itshomebaked taste and to its new position of Irrepressible NobblyAdventure’.
RELAUNCHING IN 1997 Type of consumer Type of media Sampling Venues Promotional Activity
UB’S EFFECTIVE MKTNG STRATEGY Use the strength of the brand name to reach the target market effectively via links with comedy and humour Encourage sampling at events relevant to the target market to encourage trial and (ultimately) adoption Appeal to a young target market without alienating the current broad user base (housewives) Reach the target audience through appropriate media (cinema, radio, satellite, TV, magazines) Use PR/sponsorship as a cost effective vehicle to increase awareness and develop brand personality.