Creative, Unique Releases Drive Sales for Both LTOs and Traditional Products
Oreo is a brand that knows how to release exciting, unique, and creative limited-edition flavors, and they do so regularly to enthusiastic consumer reception.
The team that is responsible for these innovative ideas is a closely guarded secret. “Their job is really how do we continue to excite our fans and drive growth through flavor innovation,” said Justin Parnell, the senior director of the Oreo brand.
Since releasing the Birthday Cake Oreo in 2012 to celebrate the 100th anniversary of its signature cookie, Oreo has introduced 65 flavors, including, in the last three years alone, Hot Chicken Wing Oreos, Wasabi Oreos, Crispy Tiramisù Oreos and Carrot Cake Oreos. (Certain flavors are only available in specific markets; the Wasabi and Hot Chicken Wing Oreos were released in China.)
Image Credit: @Oreo on Twitter
Novelty Oreos sell reasonably well. According to Nielsen, sales of flavored, seasonal and other novelty Oreos were up over 12 percent over the last three years.
But the sales are not the point. Novelty Oreos, according to Mr. Parnell, play a much purer role: They help drive consumers back to milk’s alleged favorite, the 108-year-old paterfamilias, the plain old Oreo. In other words, the new flavors function as advertisements for the original.
And it seems to work. In the time that sales were up 12 percent for novelty flavors, sales of the classic were up almost 22 percent, according to Nielsen.
“When we do it well, it drives our classic Oreo cookie, as well as the sales of the limited edition,” Mr. Parnell said, of novelty flavors.
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