The growing number of store-brand teas is crowding national names from shelves here and abroad leading in at least one instance to desperate measures by marketers.
It was revealed last week that Typhoo Tea, a popular British brand, collaborated with Intelligent Marketing Solutions (IMS) to pay field workers to pose as disgruntled customers and pressure grocer Sainsbury’s to return Typhoo tea to the shelf.
The Sunday Times reports published an email instructing IMS staff “to contact Sainsbury’s by the following methods [email, Facebook, etc.] to ask why they no longer stock Typhoo tea in a specific store (the stores will be listed) and to ask if the product can be restocked.” The memo went on to say, “You will be provided with a Sainsbury’s store for each call, but this may not be a store near you. However, because this is an online assignment, this will have no bearing on you conducting this assignment successfully.” Staff was offered $2.50 per phone call and for contacts made via social media and $4 per letter. The campaign was postponed once the scheme was made public.
Source: The Sunday Times