In 2016 Countdown embarked on a redesign of its home brand products and along for the ride has been Brandhub, which has been responsible for the supermarket’s Fresh offering. StopPress talks to Karla Douglas, Brandhub’s managing director and account director, about the process of establishing a new look, and how Australian and New Zealand customers differ.
After 20 years with Ogilvy, Countdown is taking a new creative direction with the appointment of Y&R NZ as its lead brand agency and Wellcom Group as the partner responsible for day-to-day advertising production.
Last night, the best of New Zealand’s PR practitioners were recognised at the PRINZ Awards Gala Dinner where Campbell Squared Communications and Resolve Communications shared the Supreme Award for work that’s had a positive impact on their respective communities.
AA Smartfuel and Countdown are each celebrating the supermarket’s joining of the AA Smartfuel programme with new TVCs that take different approaches to the partnership.
Loyalty programmes are the latest brand experience to feel some disruption, as brands collaborate or diversify. Elly Strang takes a look New World’s roll out of a nationwide clubcard, and Countdown and AA Smartfuel’s joint loyalty scheme.
The collectables fad has over the last few years taking hold of the nation, with retailers and petrol stations drawing in the masses with their miniature marvels. And while by all rational measures the craze should’ve run its course by now, Countdown is squeezing the lemon for all its worth by launching yet another round of collectables.
A supermarket may not be the first kind of business you think of when talking innovation and technological advancements but this week, Countdown is celebrating 20 years of online shopping and a new partnership with Samsung. We take a trip down memory lane to see how the floppy disk and dial-up-internet-run programme has been replaced by computers, tablets, smartphones and now smart refrigerators.
Today Countdown announced it’s rolling out a refresh of its own brand range, as well as introducing a new category to its line up, expecting the massive task to take about two years, with the first hint of the change to be visible on supermarket shelves in May.
Yes, the craze is not over yet and we doubt it will be anytime soon. Countdown has just released its latest range of collectibles with Disney in what’s been a clever partnership for the supermarket chain, because as we all know, kids (and let’s be honest, many adults) go nuts over Disney. Here’s a look at its latest marketing ploy in the form of projectable cards.
With the annual slam of Christmas commercial messaging hitting us from all sides, it comes as little surprise that 59 percent of Kiwis feel that Christmas has become too commercial. So are brands doing themselves a disservice by focusing on sales rather than more authentic Christmas messaging?
It’s not Christmas without carols, trees and ads. And while New Zealand retail brands aren’t going as large as those in the UK, whose Christmas campaigns tend to be looked forward to and often clock up views in the millions, there are signs that things might be heading in a more emotional direction here too.
Earlier this month, Bauer Australia confirmed it would be shutting down Zoo Weekly, due to rapidly declining sales. And though some celebrated the demise of the publication as an ethical victory, lad culture is stronger than ever in the online space.
The human urge to collect is a powerful one (and makes for excellent television). And our local supermarkets have been tapping into this urge in recent years, whether through tiny groceries or animal cards. In pretty much every case, the nation seems to have gone completely mad for them, with swap meets being organised, black markets being established and kids regularly tugging on parents’ pants demanding the full set and the associated plastic tat. Now Countdown has struck up a deal with Disney Pixar for its latest collectables campaign, Domino Stars.
Over the past 11 years, Bridget Lamont has moved her way up the ranks at the green juggernaut of Kiwi retail to eventually become the general manager of marketing. She recently chatted to us about price wars, shouty retail advertising and the perception that Countdown isn’t a Kiwi company.
Every once in a while, brands jump onto their promotional soapboxes and take aim at what they see as their competitors’ flaws. And while this type of comparative advertising has existed for as long as competing brands have been being sharing shelf space, the Kiwi advertising space has served up a few interesting battles over the last few months.
“It’s not digital vs newspapers,” says NZME commercial director Sandra King. “It’s about the client having as many touch points as possible. If you miss the newspaper pipe, you’re actually missing a great deal of reach and frequency.”
In what looks set to be another big blow for local news publishers, StopPress understands that Progressive Enterprises will be shifting a significant chunk of its ad spend from press advertising to other channels and is also thought to be trialling a reduction of unaddressed mailers in some areas as part of its media strategy for FY16, which commenced on 30 June. And Foodstuffs is paying close attention to the moves.
Last year, Countdown jumped onto the collectibles bandwagon by distributing DreamWorks Heroes 3D cards to customers who spent $20 or more in stores. And despite this previous campaign being criticised for relying on pester power and for not being environmentally friendly, Countdown is going for another collectibles ride—and this time it’s all about the inhabitants of the wild.
Foodstuffs has collaborated with one-to-one agency JustOne to launch a new loyalty programme exclusive to New World. In the past, the company has relied on the Fly Buys reward scheme to give its customers added incentive to shop at the store, but Foodstuffs group general marketing manager Steve Bayliss says that it was time to develop something discrete. And while this is a novel move for New World, it comes well after Countdown first launched its loyalty programme in 1994.
Over the course of the last week, the nation’s major supermarket chains have been embroiled in a discount battle that the Herald has dubbed ‘bread wars’. The first shots of this this retail skirmish were fired on 17 July, when Countdown dropped the price of its budget white bread from $1.48 to only $1, a discount that was immediately promoted via radio and television advertisements under the ‘Price Lockdown’ banner that has been giving Kiwis reduced prices since October last year. On the very day that Countdown dropped its bread prices, New World released a similar campaign and shortly thereafter Pak ‘n Save did the same. And this effectively served as the next phase of a back-and-forth discount battle that has seen both Foodstuffs and Countdown taking aim at each other in numerous campaigns.
Kath Dewar, managing director of marketing agency Good Sense, shares her not-so-rosy views on pester power in the light of Countdown’s hugely successful Heroes Dreamworks campaign.