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Promo Dynamic – Ice Cream Sales Hot Up As Category Deals Soar During 2014

The Grocer

Competition has hotted up in the freezer aisle as ice cream brands run nearly twice the number of deals offered a year ago.

In the four weeks to 13 July, 302 featured space promotions were run in the ice cream category, up from 161 in the same period a year ago, according to retail analyst Assosia.

The greatest surge in activity was from Unilever ’s Wall’s brand, which ran almost three times the number of promotions compared with last year and increased the average saving slightly from 34% to 35.5%. It dominated the category’s promotional space over the period, accounting for 41% of all the deals. The activity follows the launch of marketing campaign ‘Goodbye Serious’ in May.

Deals on Mars, Kelly’s and Nestlé-branded ice creams doubled year on year, while Cadbury, Häagen-Dazs and Ben & Jerry’s made more modest increases. Many brands offered shallower deals than a year ago, and across the market theaverage saving fell two percentage points, to 34.6%.

The boom in ice cream sales during last July’s heatwave and predictions of good weather this July had encouraged brands to invest in promotions this year, said Assosia MD Kay Staniland.

“It is hard for ice cream makers and retailers to schedule in featured space promotional activity as this can be costly if the weather doesn’t match the expectations,” she said. “Additional space can be added at short notice, such as branded freezers on the end of aisles.”

Increased ice cream activity contributed to frozen products slightly increasing their share of all featured space, and other categories that benefit from good weather – including soft drinks and wine – also gained share. The promise of good weather, combined with World Cup excitement, brought a 27% hike in the number of deals on beer, with the average saving up from 17.2% to 21.8%. 

4 weeks to 13/07/2014
RankingRank last monthBrandNumber of promotionsIncrease / Decrease on previous monthIncrease / Decrease on previous yearAverage % savingAverage savings % change m-o-mAverage savings % change y-o-y
55Birds Eye168-0.59%-25.99%39.25%6.6%-0.5%
Total o/l2006-0.74%-0.35%29.07%0.1%1.8%
Total brands95061.57%5.79%34.23%0.0%0.4%

Published in The Grocer, 24 July 2014