Haagen Dazs and Ben and Jerry Pint

I was at Target yesterday and took a closer look at the ice cream display. The same freezer display had both HD and B&J. The containers looked almost same in size, but you an see a subtle difference if you looked longer. The difference is more obvious when you pick the containers up and read the size printed on the packaging, HD is 14 oz and B&J is 16 oz. The price, HD is $3.29, $0.20 more than B&J.

HD is making 12.5% more just from size reduction. Will a customer picking up the ice creams notice the per oz cost? Definitely Ben and Jerry noticed it and pointing this out to the rest of us.

It is not just HD, many other CPG products are now undergoing shrinkage as marketers reduce the size for the same price. The marketing speak for this is “price realization”. I for one tend to believe products are priced lower than what they should be and completely agree with price realization methods. A marketer should not make it part of their messaging to  go after shrinkage of their competitive offerings as this limits their own price realization methods in the future.

Some customers, like this blogger, may look at this as deceptive marketing tactics. There is nothing deceptive about this, the real size is still printed in big size on the packaging. In a typical supermarket a customer has many options, in fact way too many options and can easily choose other products. The stores are also actively pushing their private labels.  What the CPGs are doing is the right strategy, focusing on preserving profit and forgoing revenue and market share.

What do you think?