Restaurant Push by Lipton

Lipton, in addition to an expensive national television advertising campaign, is rolling out a foodservice marketing program emphasizing the power of its brand.Lipton

The goal of the $10 million TV spots is to regain market share in the black tea category where Lipton remains the top-ranked brand by sales. The “Drink Positive” campaign is directed to young consumers.

In grocery and mass market outlets the company sold $265 million worth of teabags and loose leaf tea last year, double the $118 million sold by Bigelow, its nearest competitor, according to Information Research Inc., a Chicago-based market research firm.

Lipton fell behind Arizona Tea in the ready-to-drink iced tea category and has been forced to discount aggressively to hold share.

Citing market research from an Ipsos InnoQuest (August 2012) consumer survey, the company claims “patrons prefer Lipton® 2-to-1 over other brands, and 72% of restaurant patrons say they would order fresh brewed iced tea when Lipton® is the featured brand.”

The Tea Makeovers program, directed at restaurant beverage managers, is a kit that includes free front-of-house merchandise, signage and server promotions along with online tools to calculate revenue increases from switching to Lipton iced teas. The literature also introduces a line of Zero Calorie Sweet Teas.

The IPSOS market research study found that people tend to order beverages by brand. If they don’t see a brand they recognize they default to water, according to Lipton.

A report by QSR Web noted that Blake’s Lotaburger, a 75-unit Quick Service Restaurant chain in New Mexico that adopted the Makeover program, doubled its tea orders during a 12-unit test, making iced tea the No. 1 beverage in these stores.

Lipton is the world’s best-selling tea brand. The marketing campaign is the most significant devoted to Lipton black tea since 1989.

Sources: QSR Web, Lipton Tea

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