Sushi Surprise - Marketing Store-Made Sushi
Entrepreneur by Jerry Fisher
FOR TRUE MARKETING INSPIRATION, HEAD FOR YOUR PRODUCT'S
In the age-old quest to get good products the attention
they deserve, sometimes you have to turn to your market
instead of racking your brain.
DENVER-BASED Brand Management Inc., a food branding consultancy,
recently got the nod to help a local supermarket chain
improve consumer awareness of its prepared sushi offerings.
The main objective of the project was to convince potential
customers that the supermarket's take-home sushi is as
good as restaurant sushi.
BRAND MANAGEMENT'S president, Shultz Hartgrove, and team
started the way they often do: conducting focus groups
and branding strategy sessions in an attempt to come up
with a new name and "presence" for the product.
Result: a lot of heat but no light. What did they do?
Break for lunch. Recalls Hartgrove, "My partner and
I stopped at a local sushi bar, and every few minutes
we'd hear a sushi chef shout out, 'Sushi ready!' to alert
waitresses their order was ready." The partners had
a mutual lightbulb moment: "That's it--Sushi-Redi!"
Then they spied the sushi menu board. Why not hang one
like it at the supermarkets for authenticity? Not a bad
branding session for $15 plus tip.
BRAND MANAGEMENT had one last task--ad support. Their
idea: Plop Sushi-Redi ads in the restaurant sections of
local papers with the headline, "No reservations?
No problem," further implanting the idea that the
sushi is restaurant-quality. The result? The grocery chain's
sushi business improved by one-third in the first six
months. The lesson? Get out of the conference room and
into the marketplace.
JERRY FISHER a freelance advertising copywriter, is also
the author of Creating Successful Small Business Advertising.
25% of grocers will install self-checkout technology this
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