Momma Told Me: Licensing Trends In Your Local Freezer- Do They Belong?

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Thursday, September 4, 2014

Licensing Trends In Your Local Freezer- Do They Belong?

Momma Told Me: Life isn't universal.

In the world of product marketing I envision a board of stuffy old men pushing their team of hip, generational, marketers to come up with a new way to turn spaghetti sauce into a common beauty product. If it sounds crazy to you consider that nearly every mainstream ingredient, eggs, pork, avocado, grains, have their own 'committee' and these committees are essentially in place to figure out ways to get you to buy and use more of the everyday staples you are already buying and using. Toilet paper, for example, is a product that truly hasn't changed in 100 years, and yet we find witty commercials telling us about how much we need this play, or how this roll gives off a lavender scent when spun (that products in my bathroom at this very moment.) A product that we buy constantly, and will buy until our last shopping trip on this Earth, and it's still being marketed towards us.

Why? Because every category of product is broken into brands. Branding makes the advertising world go round, and few things exemplify this as well as modern fast food and fast casual chains. Last year Taco Bell even developed an entire campaign to get it's consumers to buy the very same sauce I hoarded in my cupboards. A sauce you could grab by the handful when dining in, a sauce which held no other claim to fame by ingredient or flavor, other than the fast food chain with which it bore a logo of.
If you're like me and you're tired of seeing a new 'chain' brand show up in the freezer section of your local grocery store, you're probably not thrilled to note the recent trend of ready-made branding that has swept this convenience aisle. TGI Fridays and Chilis are two major brands of note local to me, that have overwhelmed my ad streams with their promotions for their new range and additions to the frozen food assembly. What confuses me, however, is that these meals and appetizers often don't replicate beloved chain favorites, but themes off-shoots of recipes the brands feel consumers would like. And other than a hefty mark up for carrying the brand name, seldom carry any other addition over existing competitors in the category. That is to say I find myself being less blinded by the glitz of 'branding' and reaching for the frozen staples my family has known and trusted for generations (Stouffer's for example.)

Regardless, a recent marketing study sought to understand the modern consumers desires in this unique crossover branding of fast food/fast casual chains to grocery store freezer. The study, not so surprisingly revealed a demand for fast casual quality brands such as Panera and Chipotle to make an appearance in the market, while consumers were less likely to trust value and fast food brands such as McDonald's. The study went on to summarize that consumers had expressed a lack of interest in breakfast food expansions, even feeling overwhelmed by the existing options in the frozen category, and the biggest category of flavor profiles desired fell within the Mediterranean range of cuisine.

How do you feel about big name fast food and restaurant brands crossing over into your grocery store buys?

What Daughter Says: Just because I enjoy eating Cheetos now and then doesn't mean I want them making my lip gloss.

15 comments:

  1. Interesting post, Jenna. I would LOVE to see Panera make some frozen entrees, or a make-your-own-salad kit - I love their Asian sesame chicken salad, with the crispy wontons. I think TGI Friday's appetizers are nice but not sure if I'd buy a frozen meal, same for Chili's (theirs looked kind of gross, actually, when I saw them at my local store).

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  2. I'm having flashbacks of college being in Consumer Behavior class, I learned so much! I don't care much for most of the frozen food aisle but I do like the Chili's selection a lot, it's the one frozen product I actually enjoy. I'd try out something from Panera too but other than that I really don't care to see any fast food or other restaurant frozen items in my grocery store.

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  3. That's an interesting infographic. I know that I wouldn't be buying McDonalds anything at the store. But, I'd be over the moon excited if Panera bagels hit the stores.

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  4. Honestly, I don't buy it at the fast food chain so I am not going to buy it at the grocery store.

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  5. I don't eat fast fast food and I rarely buy frozen meals. If asked to try one for my blog I will do so but I tend to cook our meals and look at a frozen meal as a quick go to for when I am ill and need something for the hubby.

    I kind of barf at the thought of frozen McDonalds....

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  6. I rarely hit the frozen aisle except for a couple of staples so I admit I generally miss most of these products that hit the shelves. The only reason I now of the Chili's one is because of fellow bloggers and I admit I have thought about snagging a couple for when we are to late to cook dinner.

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  7. This reminds me of the little part in Ratatouille where they try to exploit the French chef's recipes and turn them into frozen foods for Americans. I don't really buy the restaurant items from the store because they often seem to be underwhelming.

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  8. I don't mind these foods making their way into the freezer section. I mean places like TGI Fridays have been there for years already, so why not?

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  9. Fast casual is totally what I crave! McDonald's deserves to be the lowest craved. LOL. I would think Chipotle would be higher, though.

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  10. I like the idea of some of my favorite restaurants crossing over to the grocery store. I can get my fix anytime I want now!

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  11. Some of these yes and some no. McDonald NO, Chili's yes! I like Panera. I bet their bagels in the freezer section would be good.

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  12. Ooh, that sounds awesome! I'd be happy to buy Panera bagels. Yum!

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  13. I would do back flips if Panera came to the supermarkets. I am a huge fan!

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  14. It does not bother me. There are a few brands that I would love to have at the grocery store. ie - Panera.

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