PowerBar Advertising Plan


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This advertising plan was developed during Fall 2012 by Casey Bariteau, Richard Salazar, Giovanna Gonzalez, and Sara Ketabi in our Introduction to Advertising course at Boston University - College of Communication. We began with a situation analysis of the product category, key trends, competitive analysis, and brand analysis. We then defined the target audience and where we would find them using databases and original research. We highlighted our key insight, and created a new brand positioning statement and advertising objective. From there, we thought up an intriguing new creative strategy and explained our creative execution, including our plan of action involving media.

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PowerBar Advertising Plan

  1. 1. CM317 Final Ad Plan: Changing Consumer Perceptions About  Casey Bariteau  Giovanna Gonzalez  Sara Ketabi  Richard Salazar
  2. 2. PowerBar 1 After experimenting and creating the first PowerBar with wife Jennifer Biddulph, Brian Maxwell an athlete and entrepreneur from Canada founded the PowerBar company in 1986, launching the first energy bar for athletes. A new marketing team was implemented post Nestle’s $375 Million purchase of PowerBar, and the current PowerBar slogan is “Power to Push.” In 2008, PowerBar launched its national advertising campaign featuring athletes such as Michael Phelps and Lamar Odom highlighting the remarkable effectiveness in sustaining and improving athlete’s athletic ability and endurance.  The Marketing Problem  Although PowerBar has numerous product lines that cater to both athletic males and females, consumers are predominantly male athletes. Female athletes, as well as athletic ‘spectators’ have not been heavily targeted, and large portions of consumption and sales from these types of consumers are as a result, missed out on.  Campaign Marketing Objective  Our “Power Through it All” campaign aims to broaden the types of consumers to include spectator athletes and the more common, less athletic nutrition and energy bar consumer. The campaign aims to redesign consumers perception of the brand so that consumers believe that all situational settings are appropriate settings for PowerBar to be consumed at.
  3. 3. Athletic/Sports Bars Diet Bars Health/Wellness Bars PowerBar •Athletic/Sports Bar segment leader •$70M in sales in FY2011 (Athletic/Sports Bars segment) Clif Bar • Market leader 23% Market Share •Leader in both Health/Wellness and Diet Bars sub segments •$227M in sales in FY2011 (across all segments) • 14% growth in 2011 with $1.7 Billion in sales • Expected to reach $3 Billion in sales by 2016 • Athletic/Sports Bar segment is the smallest segment • Health/Wellness Bar segment is the largest segment • Total U.S. sales of nutrition and energy bars increased by 71% between 2006 & 2011 • Sales expected to continue growing “Nutrition and Energy Bars” Market The nutrition and energy bar category, as defined by Mintel, is segmented into the three sub categories; the health/wellness bar segment, the diet bar segment, and the athletic/sports bar segment 2 Total US Retail Sales in Nutrition and Energy Bar Market FY06-FY16 (at inflation adjusted prices) Nutrition and Energy Bar Market Sub Segment Total US Retail Sales FY09 – FY11
  4. 4. 3 “While sales of many consumer products have seen declines due to the poor economy, this has not been the case for the nutrition and energy bar market. While not entirely recession- proof, this sector has shown itself to have staying power even in the light of continuing economic woes hitting many consumers’ wallets.” - David Browne, Senior Analyst www.oxygen.mintel.com  As Americans continue to become more health conscious, they are replacing traditional unhealthy snacks with nutrition bars. With 42% of people reporting they follow a “mostly healthy diet,” energy bars have become increasingly popular amongst those who seek a convenient and nutritional snack.  Consumers are also turning to nutrition bars for a cost-effective way to obtain their nutritional needs due to the economic downturn.  People no longer just need energy bars to workout – longer work hours have consumers turning to energy bars as a caffeine replacement to get them through the day.
  5. 5. 4 Current slogan: “Power to Push” SWOT Analysis:  Market Share: 8.7%  Sales  2011: $76 million  2010: $75 million  Breakdown of 2011 sales by bar:  PowerBar Performance  $21 million  PowerBar Protein  $18 million  PowerBar Triple Threat  $16 million  Primary Competitors:  Clif Bar, Balance Bar, Atkins Advantage, Luna Bar, Kashi GOLEAN Bar  Secondary Competitors:  Larabar, Nature Valley, Fiber One  Strengths  Leader in the athletic/sports bars segment  Has successfully tapped into its niche market of serious athletes and gym-goers  Strong brand reputation – sponsors many events and athletes  Strong following on social media sites such as Facebook and Twitter  Weaknesses  Low awareness of other bars in PowerBar’s product lines  Packaging is dull and dated  Opportunities  Change consumer perceptions about the brand by marketing other bars PowerBar offers  i.e. whole grain granola bars, iron girl bars, etc.  Tap into the consumer’s needs for “healthy snacking” instead of only focusing on performance bars  Develop bars that contain organic ingredients to capture more health conscious consumers  Threats  Clif Bar continues to grow in the athletic/sports bars segment and has potential to beat out PowerBar as the leader in the segment  Low barriers to entry in this category – new nutrition bars are frequently introduced to the market, becoming even more specialized and tailored to fit consumers dietary needs
  6. 6. Product Brand: PowerBar “Power to Push” Product lines include 12 kinds of energy bars, energy gels, sports drinks and mixes, energy ‘blasts,’ and dietary supplements, among others. Functionality: PowerBar offers dozens of energy bars that cater to different consumer needs, whether it be for performance enhancement or healthy snacking Top Selling PowerBars: PowerBar Performance Bar PowerBar Protein Plus PowerBar Triple Threat Price Prices for PowerBars are consistent across most distribution channels. PowerBar Performance Bar  $1.99 PowerBar Protein Plus  $2.99 PowerBar Triple Threat  $1.99 Bundling offers multiple bars per pack, at discounted prices Place Worldwide distribution of all products PowerBars are sold at:  All major grocery and convenience stores  Specialty stores such as GMC  Gyms and fitness centers  PowerBar online store  Third party online retailers  Health/dietary supplement and specialty stores Promotion  Slogan: “Power to Push”  “Power to Push” campaign featured famous athletes from different disciplines, including Michael Phelps and Lamar Odom  Mobile App Ads used to target specific active customers  Company website  PowerBar Facebook page  PowerBar Twitter page  PowerBar sponsors and holds major athletic events, such as the Dew Tour  Discounts and coupons offered on website 5
  7. 7.  Sales:  2011: $227 million  2010: $186 million  Market share: 21.8%  Current leader in the market  Although Clif Bar is leading in the overall category of Nutrition and Energy Bars, PowerBar is in fact ahead of Clif Bar in the brand segment, Athletic/Sports Bars. (Mintel) 6 Strengths • Leader in the health/wellness bar segment. • Strong brand recognition and awareness • Has extensive product line with bars catering to children, healthy snacking, workout supplements, etc. • Great taste and large variety of flavors • Focuses on the all-natural and organic ingredients, without the use of pesticides of synthetic materials • Clif Bar website consistent with Clif bar packaging and look Weaknesses • Falls behind PowerBar in the sports/athletic bar segment • Product line is limited Opportunities • Products such as the “MoJo Bar” are rapidly increasing in popularity Threats • Increases in competition due to growing category, despite recession Current slogan: “Nutrition for sustained energy”
  8. 8. 7 Sales: • 2011: $41 million • 2010: $40 million Market Share: 4.2% Strengths • Website contains blog that provides recipes, shopping tips, etc. that fit into the consumer’s healthy lifestyle • Strong understanding of the product; Consumers know in what situations to eat a Balance Bar • Has appealed to the consumer need for a snack to get them through the day Weaknesses • Market share declined from 2010 to 2011 by almost 1% Opportunities • Focuses on a specific type of consumer- those are working 9-5’s and need energy • It gives you energy but not for working out • Just launched Nimble, an energy bar for women that is high in vitamins and is sweetened with Truvia • first Balance Bar made especially for women, with only 120 calories Threats • Has little market share against its competitors • Must continue to build brand awareness in order to stay relevant in such a saturated market. Current slogan: “Enjoy what keeps you going” Positioning statement: To the working, on-the-go middle class consumer age 18 to 54, Balance bar is the reliable all-in-one energy bar brand that brings flavor and nutrition to keep you going.
  9. 9.  Market share: o 7.1% in the industry o 25.3% in the Diet Bar segment  Sales:  2011: $79 million  2010: $61 million  More focused on being a “diet bar,” yet still has a strong share of the nutrition and energy bar industry.  Positioning statement:  To the weight and health conscious consumer, age 24-54, Atkins Nutritionals is a snack bar that helps fight hunger in between meals, that brings guilt- free indulgence to the consumer. 8 Strengths • Leader in the Diet Bars segment • Strong brand familiarity due to the Atkins Diet brand • People trust the brand • Atkins website supports consumer with comprehensive information about his/her dieting lifestyle Weaknesses • Narrow market as its mainly focused on low calorie bars and meal replacement • Caters directly and only to those trying to lose weight Opportunities • Introduced 6 new Atkins’ Day Break Bar • Real opportunity for growth and tapping into consumer needs for bars that are, for example, high protein or low sodium. Threats • Especially susceptible to the low-carb diet trend since target market is dieters • consumers may decide to cut out nutrition/granola bars, such as Atkins’ bars • Poor social media presence
  10. 10. Social Media PowerBar Facebook Fans: 297,818 Twitter followers: 9,846 Bio on the Facebook “We started Power Bar to help athletes reach their goal by providing nutrition tools for optimum athletic performance.” Clif Bar Facebook Fans: 114,338 Twitter followers: 106, 685 Balance Bar Facebook Fans: 119,593 Twitter followers: 2,949 Atkins Nutritionals Facebook Fans: 116,304 9
  11. 11.  PowerBar Current Target Audience:  Males, Age 18-49  Graduated college plus  Most work in:  Sales and Office Occupations  Professional and Related Occupations  Most have household incomes higher than $75,000  Users tend to have higher disposable incomes  Heavy Internet users  React well to outdoor ads • How often do they buy Power? o 3-4 times a week • What benefits do they look for when eating PowerBars? o A quick fix of protein and vitamins o Everyday energy in place of coffee • Where do they buy their PowerBars usually? o Convenience stores, grocery stores • How do they make their choice to buy PowerBar? o “I love the flavors – in particular, Cookies ‘n Cream and Chocolate Peanut Butter.” o “I like that I can taste the protein.” o “You can feel when you’re getting protein – you know it’s the real deal.” • What do they like about the PowerBar brand? o The company is “respectable,” has been around awhile o It is “The Original Bar” • What do they think about the PowerBar brand now? o “Where’s PowerBar?” o Haven’t heard from the brand in awhile o Newer brands could “step all over” PowerBar if they don’t “keep up with the modern bar” 10 * Information gathered from MRI+ research and two one-on-one interviews
  12. 12.  What they watch:  ESPN  The Discovery Channel  National Geographic Channel  Comedy Central  History Channel  What they read:  Types of Magazines:  Men’s Magazines  Business/Finance  General Editorial  Their favorites:  ESPN The Magazine  Men’s Health  Smart Money  Runner’s World  Sports Illustrated  Time Magazine 11
  13. 13.  Websites they often visit:  ESPN.com  Amazon.com  Hulu.com  NFL.com  NBA.com  Pandora  Gmail  Yahoo!  iTunes.com  Superpages.com 12 Types of media they gravitate towards:  Magazines  Newspapers  Internet  Radio: Weekdays 3:00pm-midnight  Radio: Weekend 6:00am-3:00pm *MRI+
  14. 14.  The problem to be solved is:  Consumers seem to be confused on how/when to eat Power Bars. Many believe it is simply an exercise supplement or performance enhancer.  The key insight we uncovered is:  PowerBar has done well in establishing a loyal following from its core demographic: serious athletes and gym- goers.  However, research indicates many consume energy bars as snacks, and not performance enhancers Key Insight 13 19 6 17 43 8 In which of the following situations do you consumer energy bars? Before/After Excercising As a Dietary Supplement As a Meal Replacement As a Snack Other * Results from survey of 71 people about their health habits and energy bar preferences
  15. 15. Positioning Statement 14 To the on-the-go health conscious consumer of all ages, PowerBar is the leading athletic/performance bar brand That brings sustained energy and power to any given situation
  16. 16. Advertising Objective 15 Cognition o While PowerBar is a mature brand and product in the steadily growing nutrition and energy bar market, leading the Athletic/Sports sub segment in sales, survey respondents and consumers feel that the PowerBar is only to be consumed by the active sportsman. They are unaware of the multitude of situations and types of consumers that PowerBar may be appropriate for. We want to educate energy bar consumers and teach them that the PowerBar may be consumed at any given time as a supplement, snack, boost or meal. Consumers should not limit their purchase and consumption of PowerBar to specific situations. Association o Consumers should feel comfortable and effortless in consumption and purchase decision making. We recommend PowerBar to create a stronger and clearer association with its already existing female targeted products IronGirl and Pria, for female consumers to become more aware and willing to purchase said products. Brand loyalty amongst female consumers to the PowerBar brand would carry over into product lines under the PowerBar Brand. o Extend PowerBar’s accessibility and appropriateness to non active consumers to consume as a snack, supplement, or diet bar o Target ads to appeal to on-the-go, working individuals who have little time to cook and have meals while at work
  17. 17. 16  WHO IS THE ADVERTISING TALKING TO? Our ad “Power Through it All”, featuring a group of friends watching a sports event on TV while each eating PowerBars is advertising to on-the-go, health and budget conscious consumers, seeking snacking and dietary supplement alternatives – we describe them as the ‘spectator athlete’.  WHAT SINGLE BENEFIT SHOULD THE ADVERTISING PROMISE? The advertising should promise the flexibility of the PowerBar to be appropriate for consumption in any given situation, hence the campaign title “Power Through it All.”  WHY SHOULD THE CONSUMER BELIEVE US? Customers should believe us because PowerBar has a proven track record in its established leader position as the top selling athletic/sports bar in the nutrition and energy bar segment. PowerBar’s sponsorship of several major sporting and athletic events has also built its reputation to be a leader in supplying the active lifestyle with the required power and energy.  WHAT DOES THE CONSUMER THINK NOW? Consumers are generally confused about when and where they are ‘supposed to’ consume a PowerBar. Some consume it outside of the active sporting setting, whereas others consume PowerBars strictly before, during, or after exercise.  WHAT DO WE WANT THE CONSUMER TO THINK? We want consumers to change their perception of the brand and all product lines, and become more aware and comfortable with consuming the different PowerBars at any given time in the day, be it as a diet bar, a athletic/sports bar, or a health/wellness bar
  18. 18. 17 BRAND PERSONALITY AND VISION  PowerBar is currently marketed to the dedicated , motivated, and committed athlete leading an active and athletic lifestyle. The use of active adjectives such as “Push” in the current slogan “Power to Push” mirrors the brand’s edgy and motivated personality. Having athletes pictured in many of the advertisements, showing  Intensity and muscles conveys the high octane rush that PowerBar is suited for. Because advertising and marketing efforts are so heavily focused on such a demographic, ‘spectator’ athletes who enjoy watching sports just as much, if not more than athletes enjoy competing are left out of the potential target market  Our “Power Through it All” campaign will change PowerBar’s limiting image currently confined within the athletic/sports bar sub category, to be diversified and expanded into more casual and common situational settings, including but not limited to sporting events. The current slogan “Power to Push” will be modified to “Power Through it All” to convey PowerBar’s ability to bring energy and nutrition to all parts of the day.  In order to attract our target audience, we will feature ‘normal’ non-athlete figures in our ads to provide relevant ground for our potential consumers to associate with  Situational contexts like the casual watching of a sporting event will be featured as well to encourage consumption of PowerBar products and its appropriateness for all sorts of times and settings.
  19. 19.  Start a microsite “For the Spectator” and have people take pictures of them consuming the product.  “How did you have your PowerBar today?”  Instagram, Facebook, Twitter hashtag  Making it as easy for consumers as possible  Promote “Family Power” packs, making it easier for the end consumer by clearly telling them when, how and why they should consume our products. The package will have a little something for everyone, not matter what athletic build you are.  Sell PowerBar at sports games for the spectators  Host a sweepstakes competition in which a randomly chosen winner will receive a set “package” of PowerBar products custom fit for the winner’s situational consumption, whether that be for dieting purposes or as a workout supplement.  Shows the public that PowerBar can be consumed in a variety of ways and has a range of products from gels to smoothie bars appropriate for different times and situations in a person’s routine.  Ad 1 will be placed on sports websites and blogs such as ESPN.com, Men’s Health, SportsGrid and BleacherReport – targeting young men 16-30 who are dedicated to following sports  Ad 1 will also be placed on billboards around stadiums, encouraging spectators to chose the snack of the athlete: PowerBar  Ad 2 will be placed in Forbes, W, BusinessWeek, Wired, and Time Magazines, The Huffington Post, New York Times, corpette.com, and The Daily Muse – targeting young working professionals  Ad 3 will be placed in Martha Stewart magazine, youngandthrifty.ca, 18
  20. 20.  Market PowerBar as a differentiator that reaches a broader market rather than a target market by rebranding existing bars such as IronGirl to make it consistent with the PowerBar look, as it already has a brand following. Change packaging overall – make it more eye-catching and exciting.  Many people watch the athletic events that PowerBar sponsors, but most do not participate in them. So, rather than only marketing PowerBar as the bar for an athlete, also market it towards an athletic event spectator who does not need that surge of energy for long hours of practice, but rather wants to enjoy a snack while watching.  Promote product lines like the “spectator family,” including the PowerBar, IronGirl, PowerBar Gels for children, to show it is not just for the “macho men” but for every type of person.  Change the packaging of PowerBar to appeal a wider audience range.  “They could definitely work on the packaging.” “Make it look less like it is for big body-builders, that’s what turns women off from it.”  “The packaging is boring and too old-fashioned.”  Make consumers more aware of the variety of different bars  Harvest, Nut Naturals, Pria, Iron Girl Energy Bar  Focus on marketing bars as more of “snacks” for everyday life  Without isolating current loyal users, market Power Bars as a healthy snack or a replacement to caffeine.  “I eat a PowerBar in place of coffee – it is better than coffee because you can’t burn off caffeine.” Recommendations 19
  21. 21. Two one-on-one interviews with  Saksham Narang  Age: 20  Male  College student  Frequent Gym-goer  Katie Gifford  Age: 19  Female  College student  Ran cross country & was on the cheerleading team in high school Questions asked  Would you describe yourself as a loyal user of PowerBars?  How often do you eat PowerBars?  How often do you workout?  Would you describe yourself as a health-conscious person?  What do you like about PowerBars?  If not for meal replacement, why do you consume PowerBars?  What do you think PowerBars as a brand could work on to keep you more interested?  What do you like about PowerBars?  How do you feel and what do you know about the PowerBar brand?  What do you think PowerBar could do to improve? Sources: • One-on-one interviews • Online survey with 71 responses • MRI+ • www.twitter.com/powerbar • www.facebook.com/powerbar • www.powerbar.com • http://www.answers.com/topic/power bar-inc#ixzz2DeKZUuTK • http://www.mobilemarketer.com/cms/ news/advertising/5269.html • www.technorati.com • http://academic.mintel.com.ezproxy.b u.edu/display/613334/ • http://academic.mintel.com.ezproxy.b u.edu/display/613337/ • http://www.powerbar.com/about/abo ut.aspx • https://twitter.com/PowerBar • www.Clifbar.com/ • www.Balance.com/ • www.atkins.com/Home.aspx