The Pampered Chef is a globally recognized provider of kitchen tools, food products and cookbooks. However, the company needed to reinvent its brand to connect with the Millennial audience.
Belinda Hudmon, Chief Marketing Officer at The Pampered Chef, shared her thoughts on brand engagement during her keynote presentation to Argyle’s CMO membership at the 2018 Retail & Consumer Goods Forum: Marketing to the Modern Consumer in Chicago on May 1. In her presentation, “Revitalizing the Brand to Connect with Our Target Audience,” Hudmon offered tips to help marketing professionals engage their target consumers and foster long-lasting customer partnerships.
Today’s always-on, always-connected Millennial consumers sometimes are difficult for marketers to understand. At the Pampered Chef, the company sought ways to learn about Millennials and find out what they wanted from its products. This approach enabled the Pampered Chef to identify opportunities to connect with Millennials and provide them with products that met their expectations. “We really struggled to evolve with the shifting landscape of retail,” Hudmon noted. “We were the cooking store that came to your door … but everyone comes to your door today.”
Employing a Data-Driven Approach
To analyze its target audience, the Pampered Chef examined a wide range of customer data. The company also performed extensive research into its target audience to find out what consumers wanted from its products. This approach proved to be exceedingly valuable to the Pampered Chef. The company discovered that Millennials enjoyed food and cooking, yet many struggled to prepare their own meals.
“Interest in food and cooking is at an all-time high, especially with Millennials,” Hudmon stated. “But a lot of the Millennials today don’t have the essentials to prepare meals on their own at home.”
In addition, the Pampered Chef discovered Millennials viewed meals as “sacred” events, according to Hudmon. If the Pampered Chef could provide Millennials with tools and resources to help them make the most of meal times, the company could differentiate itself to its target audience.
Redefining the Brand Purpose
The Pampered Chef considered its purpose as well. It found the purpose of its offerings was to help consumers enjoy unforgettable meals. As a result, the Pampered Chef considered ways to ensure consumers could make the most of meal time. “As we looked at our purpose, we needed to find out and document what that purpose was,” Hudmon said. “For us, our purpose was about enriching lives, one life and one meal at a time.”
To successfully rebrand, the Pampered Chef examined its current brand tenets. Furthermore, the Pampered Chef explored why consumers may choose the company over competitors and searched for ways to further differentiate itself from rivals.
“You have to look at the brand and really understand your brand tenets,” Hudmon said. “What is your brand, what does your brand stand for and who is your growth target audience? And you need to consider what you can do that is different from your competitors.”
Ultimately, the Pampered Chef found it took a product-centric approach to its day-to-day operations. Although this approach helps the company boost its global reach in the past, the company needed to modify its approach going forward. By honing in on the customer experience, the Pampered Chef worked with its target audience to design and launch the right products based on client expectations. Plus, the Pampered Chef drove innovation in its everyday efforts – something that helped the company stand out from the competition.
“Retailers are often very product-focused, and there is a lot of competitors out there when you are just talking about products,” Hudmon pointed out. “We focused on how we could innovate around [the customer] experience.”
Putting the Customer First
The Pampered Chef puts its customers at the forefront of its everyday operations. It prioritizes innovation, and as such, continues to explore opportunities to bolster its product line and improve its customer partnerships. This approach has led to myriad performance improvements across the business, too.
With its marketing efforts, the Pampered Chef rejuvenated its brand. The company has successfully engaged Millennials and continues to explore opportunities to maintain long-term partnerships with its target consumers. “For us, it was about reinvigorating the brand,” Hudmon indicated. “We were able to transform our brand to be relevant to a younger population.”
Going forward, the Pampered Chef plans to use digital tools to connect with consumers across mobile devices, social networks and other rapidly evolving platforms. The company is dedicated to building brand engagement and maintaining brand relevance, and it plans to do whatever it can to provide its customers with the products, services and support they want.
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