McCain Foods: Free Ladybird Books

Blue Chip Marketing

Background

The frozen category is exceptionally competitive (79% sales are on price promotion) with an increasing focus on own label brands (52% of sales go to own label which are often half the price of branded competitors).

It is also one of the most unfriendly sections of the supermarket. It's cold and difficult for brands to stand out as they are often hidden behind glass doors and point of sale is difficult to secure.

With general household spend declining 8% in the first halfof 2012, McCain Smiles was beginning to face increasing pressure. Sales had plummeted 18% and penetration was falling 19% yoy – an unsustainable rate.

As McCain's only brand catering specifically for families with children aged 2-7 years, something needed to be done urgently to add value to the brand (beyond the ongoing price promotions), stem the decline and address the challenge from own label.