Does the idea of re-invigorating your brand appeal to you? If so, then read on.
In 1971, Hamburger Helper was introduced to the American marketplace. After some initial success, brand managers grew concerned that the brand would lose market share to the growing fast-food and pre-packaged meals segments.
In Marketing Management, Philip Kotler and Kevin Keller describe the situation this way: “The inexpensive pasta-and-powdered mix Hamburger Helper was designed to quickly and inexpensively stretch a pound of meat into a family meal. With an estimated 44% of evening meals prepared in under 30 minutes and strong competition from fast-food drive-through windows, restaurant deliveries and precooked grocery store dishes, Hamburger Helper’s days of prosperity might seem numbered.
Market researchers found, however, that some consumers do not necessarily want the fastest microwaveable meal solution possible — they also want to feel good about how they prepare the meal. In fact, on average, they would prefer to use at least one pot or pan and 15 minutes of time. To remain attractive to the segment who want to spend less time in the kitchen without totally abandoning their traditional roles as family mealmakers, marketers of Hamburger Helper are always introducing new flavors to tap into the latest consumer trends.”
Does Hamburger Helper really help hamburgers? Maybe yes. Maybe no. But one thing we know for sure is that the Hamburger Helper case study can help you.
How the Hamburger Helper Case Study Applies to You
By taking a deeper dive into their consumers’ psyche, brand managers at Hamburger Helper found that their brand was fulfilling a hidden consumer need. As a result, the re-invigorated their brand by introducing new flavors that tapped into consumer trends. So the question becomes — What hidden consumer need is your brand fulfilling? And is there a way to leverage that hidden need to grow your sales and revenue?
Here are a few questions you can ask to help figure that out (these are borrowed from Advertising and Communication Management, written by my friends George and Michael Belch):
Who buys our product or service?
Who makes the decision to buy the product? (This question is important because the decision-maker and purchaser are often two different people.)
Who influences the decision to buy the product?
How is the purchase decision made? Who assumes what role?
What does the customer buy? What needs must be satisfied?
Why do customers buy a particular brand?
Where do they go or look to buy the product or service?
Where do they buy? Any seasonality factors?
How is our product perceived by customers?
What are customers’ attitudes toward our product?
What social factors might influence the purchase decision?
Do customers’ lifestyles influence their decisions?
How do personal or demographic factors influence the purchase decision?
The Bottom Line
Consumers buy products for reasons we may not initially understand. By doing research and asking your organization the questions outlined above, you can begin to uncover new and innovative ways to sustain and invigorate your brand.
Jamie Turner is the Chief Content Officer at BKV's 60 Second Marketer. He is the co-author of How to Make Money with Social Media and is an in-demand marketing speaker at events, trade shows and corporations around the globe.