Saxonville was a 70-year-old, privately held family
business headquartered in Saxonville, Ohio.
The company produced a variety of pork sausage
Bratwurst- Flat(0% volume increase)
Breakfast sausage- Decline(2-digit revenue decline)
Italian sausage- Rise(9% in 2004,15% in 2005)
o Breakfast sausage
o Italian sausage named Vivio
Saxonville first entered the Italian sausage market in
The company gave it the required trade support, but
chose not to go for any advertisement like the other
companies in the category.
For Vivio’s first six months, it went on deal every other
month, and also offered some in-store sampling.
Company used a Styrofoam tray covered in plastic wrap,
with a label depicting coiled links of sausage next to a head
of garlic and an old-fashioned sausage grinder.
It says ‘Vivio fresh Italian sausage’ and has an Italian flag in
Which consisted of 10 colleagues that would provide input
and perspective in her investigation of the Italian sausage
Note: Saxonville had not conducted market research on the
Italian sausage customer before her joining.
Their first Task:
To understand customer’s behaviours and needs.
Gain an idea of the language consumers used.
A top brand consultant, and a
professional from a marketing
They main priorities as set by Ann Banks for conducting the
Understand current behaviours, triggers to purchase, and
Get a clear understanding of product benefits, attributes
Develop a solid feel for core values and the role this
product plays, or can play, in these people’s lives.
To make the score team easily understand the outcome of the
focus group Banks and Bishop constructed a perceptual map
According to both maps Italian sausage was revealed as a
“meal solution”(high rating on both X and Y axis)
From the conversations with focus groups six distinct
themes were selected as potential territories (bases) for
positioning the brand:
A list was made based on the values held dear by the
The discussion finally led to the establishment of 4 mock
Consumers were exposed to these 4 mock concepts and
asked to select and prioritize their three favourites.
Brainstorming potential tactical strategies that would
support the two top-voted positionings and optimize brand
identity gave out the three lists:
Develop a national product under the
Vivio name or as a new brand.
Saxonville needs a well-thought-out positioning plan.
sought by the target
perceived as a
of product use.
First choice in
Loss of focus from
Though “Family connection” may seem better idea, it might be
because of consumers’ familiarity with existing brands’ “authentic
Italian heritage” positioning, it is clear that “Italian” implied “family”,
so there might exist a tendency of the consumer to feel more
connected with this concept.
From the Italian Sausage Concept Assessment data we see that:
“Family Connection”(F) would buy:81%(23% definite+58% probably)
“Clever Cooking”(C) would buy: 72%(41% definite+31% probably)
We see that in F, % of definite buyers is not even 1/3 of the total
“would buy”, and due to tough competition by similar
positioning(Italian name brands) many from 58% may not buy the
The Vivio brand was rated at 7 among 20 in the data from
focus groups, hence change in name is necessary to
implement premium positioning as it is difficult to change
the prospective in consumer’s mind.
The research conducted by Ann Banks and team clearly
states that, the consumers under weekend-barbeque ‘Brat
pack’ will remain unaffected by Italian sausage as the use of
Italian sausage has nothing to do with what happens on the
And secondly, ‘Brat’ was used mainly in outdoor grills on
weekend afternoons and evenings, whereas Italian sausage
was used mainly for dinner time eating. So, they are the
options for totally different sections.
Including Saxonville in brand name:
Nationwide recognition and popularity.
Signifies premium quality.
Preferred placement with retailers.
4 highest performing SKUs from 2005
91% of the 2005 Italian sausage revenue
Large window such that the Fresh product is
Strong Italian colour/image along with the
Italian flag to promote heritage and it would
also indirectly promote the feeling of a
Back placed recipes(diff recipes for diff
packages) for quick meals ideas only.
Vacuum sealed to preserve freshness.
Priced at 10% higher SRP than competitive brands and
25% higher than store brands.
Conveys the premium positioning.
Will help support promotional costs.
Also consistent with the pricing of Saxonville(all other
product also priced above competitive brands).
Nationwide Distribution channels already in existence via
SKU positioning important: eye level, easy accessible in
regional market areas.
All major supermarkets and grocery markets.
But currently stay out of discount warehouses.
Recipe book giveaways
Limited stock/duration BOGO
Magazines(recipes/advertisement): women’s and
Puzzle games based ads in newspapers eg-reach a
packet of Capucina via maze
Interactive puzzle/fun games.
If you want to make your wife happy/smile try
taking home Capucina for a change.