Segmenting the Packaged Foods Product-Market

tomato-soup-recipe-dec-1962-campbells-620x830Large packaged food makers — like Campbell’s and General Mills are mentioned in this article — segment their markets and develop marketing mixes to meet different segments’ needs. This Wall Street Journal article “What Does Your Fridge Say About You?” (December 16, 2014, non-subscribers may need to click here) offers some insights about how Campbell’s segmentation helps the company develop more effective marketing strategies to increase holiday food purchases.

I am going to show this video in class and present some slides that briefly describe Campbell’s six different segments (the article has some great images you could cut and paste into a slide for each segment). I then plan to ask my students questions like “Why does Campbell’s create this segmentation?” and “How can that help Campbell’s?” Next, I will place my students in small groups to develop different marketing strategies (“consider all 4 Ps”) for marketing soup, pretzels, or peanut butter. My focus will not be around the holidays, but for year-round consumption. I will ask each team to choose three segments — and then develop three different strategies. They will present this by creating a matrix with each brand listed at the top of a column and each row labeled as “target market”, then each of the 4 Ps. I might let them know that segmentation is not a new strategy — and show them the image here (a print ad from 1962). This could be a good in-class active learning exercise.

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