Thursday, August 29, 2013

A Gum Commercial to Make You Cry as Wrigley and Mondelez Plot...

A Gum Commercial to Make You Cry as Wrigley and Mondelez Plot Gum Comebacks

Gum is stuck in a sales rut and there are plenty of reasons why, according to analysts. Teenagers have less money to spend. There is more competition from other snacks, including mints. Even skinny jeans have played a role, said one analyst.

Gum “couldn’t fit in pockets,” said Matt Hudak, who covers the snack sector for Euromonitor International. While brands have started to solve that issue with slimmer packs, the category’s larger issues remain. Sugarless gum sales fell 6.6% to $2.7 billion in the year ending July 14, according to IRI. “There’s just apathy toward it,” Mr. Hudak said. “Marketers definitely need to reignite a passion somewhere with someone.”

But how? The nation’s two largest gum marketers, Wm. Wrigley Jr. Co. and Mondelez International, appear to be coming up with two different approaches. Mondelez, whose brands include Trident and Stride, has foreshadowed a return to more functional messaging with an emphasis on benefits such as oral health, rather than the more emotional approach that CEO Irene Rosenfeld recently characterized as “a little bit too esoteric.”

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