Thursday, August 19, 2010

The "SuperSized" Economy; There is no "value added."

We're headed for more bad economic times. It's not a question as if we're asking, "Are we headed for more economic hardships?" It's a fact. We are. And here's why.
We're headed for more bad times because there's no way to "add value" to the economy the way marketers "add value" to soft drinks by replacing sugar with cheaper high fructose corn syrup. The economy is chock full of artificial ingredients and the only way to return to solid ground is to subtract the "value added" components of the economy that got us in self-induced trouble in the first place.

For example, General Mills "added value" to Wheaties in the 80s by replacing "whole wheat" with non-descript "whole grain." As consumer pull-through diminished retailers began delisting the brand. General Mills had hoped no one would notice the change the same way no one noticed when Coke replaced sugar with HFCS - consumers just drank more because Coke could sell larger quantities (20 ounce bottles vesus 12) for fractions of a cent more. Supersizing was a great way to get a larger share of stomach. But it didn't work with Wheaties. General Mills never gave consumers more product for just a little more money. That was Steve Sanger's fault as inextricably linked to companies such as ADM and Cargill as he is. By repositioning the brand as "whole wheat" again Wheaties increased distribution 24% and won Advertising Age Magazine's recognition as "The Year's Best Repositioned Brand.

The bottom line here is that we've already "SuperSized" the economy the same way McDonald's "supersized us. We found out it was unhealthy. Food scientists are just wonderful.

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