Just a few quick hits…
SOUP & WARHOL
Campbell’s Soup is effectively double-dipping into the oeuvre of Warhol’s “32 Campbell’s Soup Cans” by trying to generate a buzz about the pieces of art that were created 50 years ago. They have released four limited edition cans in Target Stores commemorating the release of those prints in a gallery. What once might have caused some members of counsel to put in long hours to determine whether Warhol’s depiction of the soup was legal has now been turned on end in the attempt to generate excitement where there may have not been some otherwise.
I don’t even believe that Campbell’s believes it will have that big of an effect on their bottom line – as reported in this Newser piece – but they can’t be blamed for going all out on this opportunity to get themselves out there. In addition to the products in Target stores, they have created a Facebook page to allow fans some type of 15 minutes of fame, and they are also sponsoring MOMA’s “Regarding Warhol: Sixty Artists, Fifty Years” exhibition that opens on September 18th.
Interesting that Campbell’s had to get approval from the Warhol foundation to create the special edition cans…
ARE WE READY FOR SQUARE BOTTLES?
Still on the packaging path, there was coverage about a prototype that will surely cause many beer drinkers to pose the proverbial, “huh?”
Are beer drinkers ready for a bottle that’s not really a bottle? Will they care that packaging will enable more cost-effective shipping? And, will people want to look like kids with alternate versions of juice boxes in their hand as they pound them down?
This prototype by French company, Petit Romain, offers that opportunity. Who knows when we’ll see the format hit our shelves? Maybe it will be in limited quantities – like the soup above – but will it be used for more than a try? I don’t know how a bottle opener is going to work, or how my nose is going to feel mashed up on my last swig. I give them props for looking at packaging alternatives and hooking coverage by outlets like the Los Angeles Times…
LASTLY, WHAT NOT TO DO…
When I read about Walmart’s plan to accentuate the price difference with their competitors, I was confused because it seems like such a late date to roll out April Fool’s jokes. As mobile options to check around for lowest prices in a matter of seconds, I was taken aback by Walmart’s planned service to receive emails from consumers and send back an email in a few days to alert the consumer how much they could have saved.
Perhaps it is pure genius, but it is more likely a reflection of what Walmart thinks of its customers. They obviously feel that their consumer would not be privy to the newest technology and would be OK with waiting a few days to see if the prices received were, in fact, the lowest. available.
What concerned me the most was that their customers might be so willing to bring personal information to Walmart’s door. A company’s offer of a loyalty program as a way to generate knowledge about their consumers is one thing. To create something that aggregates shopping information about a consumer’s shopping at all stores seems a little duplicitous. Whether they can provide a value to the consumer in lower prices for the next time they shop is fine, but they must be doing it for the bigger “get” of finding out more about their consumers than perhaps they should.
Walmart will rightfully never share how many people participate in this low-tech offering, but the implications could be big if a larger amount of people participate. Hopefully, they are smart and sharp enough to not participate – trusting other resources or their own noggins to get the best pricing without giving up their personal preferences and habits.