Why does one product succeed in one market but fails dismally in another?
Why is Campbell’s soup the market leader in America, but runs a distant second in the UK? And, why does the opposite apply for Heinz? Both make excellent soups and both target the same customer base.
Clearly here, both products are leaders in their respective markets, but somehow cannot get dominant penetration in new markets. The products are consumer approved, so it should not be a case of a rubbish product. Maybe some taste differentials exist, but I think that this is unlikely. The main reason for this variance is market perceptions.
Consumer perceptions play an important role in dictating a products success. These perceptions may be formed over time, the homegrown nature of the product, the trust of the product, the pre-existing reputation of the product. These all contribute to the product’s halo.
Sometimes you can pay to get a halo effect that extends further than a competitor product.
Sometimes, however, no matter how much money you pour into the marketing, the halo will not grow. In Australia recently, a well-known and trusted vitamin manufacturer with an established and strong presence entered into the milk formulae market. The product failed and was subsequently withdrawn from the product range. It could be argued that milk formulae is not that far removed from the vitamin core business, however, efforts to distance milk formulae from vitamins did not happen. The public just did not buy that concept.
So, if you are particularly strong in the pet food market, don’t try and bring out a range of processed meats under the same brand name. You will not be able to break the association between animal and human food and your human food venture will fail.