Values branding builds loyalty, community

02/28/2014 10:26:00 AM
Chuck Robinson

She said Cal Giant began supporting cycling as a means to promote the company but the relationship has evolved to being part of Cal Giant’s core message.

“We strongly believe in the need for both good eating habits, with a diet including our berries, and regular exercise to truly achieve a healthy lifestyle,” Jewell said.

Supporting its value marketing strategy, Cal Giant is organizing a fundraising cycling event called Tour de Fresh that ends Oct. 16, the day before Fresh Summit starts in Anaheim, Calif. The event will benefit the Let’s Move Salad Bars to Schools campaign. Members of the fresh produce industry will be signed up to bike 275 miles from Carmel, Calif., to Anaheim beginning Oct. 13.

More info is available at tourdefresh.com, or contact Jewell at Cal Giant. Other sponsors already signed up include Wenatchee, Wash.-based Oneonta Starr Ranch Growers; Los Gatos, Calif.-based Foodlink and Bard Valley Medjool Date Growers Association, Bard, Calif., which markets Bard Valley Natural Delights medjool dates.

Break through the clutter

In a book published by Harvard Business Review Press titled “Winning the Story Wars: Why Those Who Tell — and Live — the Best Stories Will Rule the Future,” author Jonah Sachs holds up Ben and Jerry’s ice cream as an example of values marketing. Founders Ben Cohen and Jerry Greenfield have sold a lot of ice cream, but it was Cohen’s passion in support of peace and against military spending that helped their company break out of the pack.

“Companies do controversial marketing all the time to break through the clutter. So if you can raise above it by taking a stand against nuclear weapons instead of using some sexy young girl, why not?” Cohen said.

Cohen warned that “values by committee” did not work well because it was impossible to get everyone on the same page and move forward, so they went back to acting on the values of the founders. Consumers saw the values as authentic because they were so personal. 

A lot to consider

The part I don’t like about Chipotle’s value branding has to do with the seeds of fear sown by its message. Now I have to worry about exploding cows.



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