MK3009CN Buyer behaviour 2 Resit Coursework August 2008 - DOC by lonyoo


									 MK3009C/N Buyer Behaviour 2
 Resit Coursework August 2008

If you have been asked to resit MK3009C/N Buyer behaviour 2 coursework. Please
follow the following instructions. You may have to resit either the journal article
summary or and the case study. Please submit the course work to registry by 15 th
August 2008. Please ensure you have cover sheet with your students ID number,
Module title and your tutors name on your work.

Journal article resit course work
Presentation and Summary of an Academic Journal Article (25%)
Please produce a briefing paper based on a summary and analysis of ONE of the following
Journal article listed below. You are not required to do a presentation BUT must produce the
power point sildes with your briefing paper.

 The briefing paper:
 Must be of NO MORE than 3 sides of A4 paper. Type 12 font.
 Each paper must include the title of the Journal article, the name of the author/s, date of
   the article and the Journal of which the article appeared. The student’s name, student
   number and date submitted.
 In your summary paper and presentation slides it is advisable to follow the same layout as
   the research article.
Research background
Aims and objectives of the study
Research propositions and Hypothesis
Implication & application.


Burns D. Neisner L. (2006) Customer Satisfaction in retail setting. The contribution of
emotion. International Journal of Retail and Distribution Management. Vol. 34. No.1, pp.49-

Martin D. O’Neil M. Hubbard S. Palmer A. (2008). The role of emotion in explaining
satisfaction and future behaviour intentions.Journal of Services Marketing. Vol.22, pp.224-

Hunter G. (2006). The role of anticipation emotion, desire and intention in the relationship
between image and shopping centre. International journal of Retail and Distribution
Management. Vol.34. No 10. pp. 709-721.

 MK3009C/N Buyer behaviour 2 Resit August 2008

                                  Pot Noodle fights back

Case study Brief

A small manufacturer of snack food noodles is concerned about the way consumers feel
about Pot Snack foods and is keen to try and understand the Pot Noodle strategy. In report
format identify the main problems Pot Noodle faced due to changes in consumer buying
patterns and tastes. In your analysis relate this to key consumer buyer concepts. Comment
on how they tried to rectify the main problems. Using consumer behaviour theory discusses
how they might attempt to increase the consumption of snack food noodles.

Marks will be allocated based on the:
 Application of consumer and buyer behaviour theoretical concepts.
 Ability to understand the practical applications of consumer buyer concepts.
 Ability to show that they have analysed the given data.
 Ability to discuss logically the managerial implications of the given problem and
  suggested the best possible solution to the problem.
 Evidence that students have done some additional reading in preparation for the
  case study.

                                Pot Noodle fights back

You might not think that noodle pots are particularly macho, but recent innovations aimed at
encouraging women to tuck in indicate that the category is becoming more female-friendly.
The two main brands - Batchelors' Super Noodles and Unilever's Pot Noodle - are pushing
their pots to a wider audience. After a few tough years, the instant pot snacks category has
bounced back, rising 4.2% to £88m [IRI 52 w/e to 24 February 2007]. There is still some way
to go before it once again attains the heights of four years ago, when the market was worth
£105m. But manufacturers have made real progress in recovering the lost sales that followed
the 2005 Sudan 1 scandal.

Many UK consumers remain unsure about eating noodles. Barely half of adults eat noodles,
compared with more than seven in ten adults who eat pasta. However, consumption is
strongly linked to age with younger consumers being more adventurous. The fact that noodles
are quick and convenient is widely cited as an attribute. However, this could imply that they
are generally associated with snacking products, which have a relatively poor quality image.
There has however been a change in the type of noodles bought reflecting the growing
consumer interest in eating them as part of an authentic Eastern-style meal. More
adventurous ABC1 adults in the family lifestage are the most prone to be buyers of dry egg

and Ready to cook (RTC) noodles and/or noodles from a restaurant/takeaway. Convenience
as well as the desire for more authentic ingredients have encouraged consumers to trade up
from dry to wet ready-to-cook plain noodles. RTC noodles have received a further boost from
NPD leading to a wider range of noodle thicknesses being offered as well as the introduction
of flavoured noodles. Sales of both dry and ready-to-cook plain noodles have benefited from
the increasing popularity Eastern-style stir-fries, which can be based around healthy
ingredients such as vegetables, chicken and seafood and prepared in just A quarter of adults
think noodles are a good alternative to other carbohydrates such as rice, pasta or potatoes,
suggesting that noodles are eaten not just because they are convenient. This is especially
likely to be the case among those who eat ‘real noodles’ rather than snacking products.
Chilled noodle products continue to outperform frozen, but suppliers of chilled plain noodles
will need to expand and differentiate their offer if they are to continue enjoying current strong
rates of growth and compete successfully against the wide range of noodle types available
under ambient RTC brands.

Sales of noodles increased in value by 15% between 2002 and 2007 to reach £191 million.
Growth has not been continuous, Consumer concerns over healthy eating have also held
back growth. Snacking noodles (typified by Pot Noodle) account for half of market value in
2007, followed by savoury (23%) and ambient plain noodles (14%). Chilled noodles and
chilled noodle-based ready meals each account for 6% of market value, while frozen ready
meals make up the remaining 1%. (Mintel Noodles 2008) The sector has wasted no time
improving quality to help boost its image. The rapid growth of Japanese noodle bar chain
Wagamama, which made an entry into retail towards the end of last year, has also helped to
re-invent noodles' image. Strong sales of cup/bowl instant noodles are rather due to the
popularity of one single brand and its advertising strategy, namely Unilever’s Pot Noodle. The
brand has traditionally targeted 16-24 year old male audience,.Unilever introduced hot water
dispensers in UK convenience stores and Petrol stations in order to make its Pot Noodle
more convenient, and according to the company sales increased considerably as a result.
Nevertheless, Pot Noodle is unlikely to be able to establish itself as an alternative to snacks
which can truly be eaten on-the-go.

However a recent revamp, with a new recipes as well as new packaging, set out to clean up
Pot Noodle's act and convince those other than students and campers to try the product. Pot
Noodle and its competitors have made a concerted move away from the cheap and cheerful
student image of old towards a healthier, more wholesome message Healthy eating and
concerns about obesity are influencing the type of foods chosen when snacking on the go,
contributing to strong growth in healthier options .The pursuit of a healthier lifestyle appears to
be discouraging some consumer from snacking between meals, although the frequency of
snacking on the go by others continues to rise (Mintel Noodles 2008) Range additions from
Pot Noodle and Batchelors Super Noodles, incorporating lower fat and salt levels, generated
increased levels of consumer approval, although broader health concerns with processed
foods of this type remain. "Pot noodles have a widespread consumer appeal from teenagers
to office workers, by offering both a quick easy-to-prepare snack while also meeting the
needs of those seeking a hot filling meal," says Peter Baxendell, commercial director for Blue

Unilever, the brand owner of category leader Pot Noodle, recently embarked on the second
phase of the brand's relaunch in 2006. The changes include slashing salt levels by 50%
across the range, the introduction of three new varieties, updated packaging highlighting the
improved recipes. The salt reduction builds on improvements made in 2006 and takes the
average Guideline Daily Amount (GDA) percentage of salt per standard sized pot from 57%
down to 25%.

As part of the relaunch, seven old flavours of Pot Noodle were withdrawn in the summer of
2007 including Bacon, Fajita, Sweet & Sour, Posh Spicy Chicken and Posh Spicy. Two ‘low
salt’ variants were also axed, since salt levels have been reduced across the board. As proof
that reducing salt does not mean compromising on taste,new flavours include Tikka Masala,
Lamb Hotpot and Chicken Satay have been added.Packs carry the messages ‘only 5% fat’
and ‘no artificial colours or preservatives’ Unilever has also introduced hot water dispensers
in UK convenience stores and Petrol stations in order to make its Pot Noodle more
convenient. Nevertheless, Pot Noodle is unlikely to be able to establish itself as an alternative
to snacks which can truly be eaten on-the-go.

Pot Noodle advertising has traditionally aimed to shock . Golden Wonder launched Pot
Noodle in 1979, the year Margaret Thatcher came to power. The concept came from Japan.
For a while we were confused. Pot Noodle seemed to belong to an earlier era of space-age,
dehydrated food (Vesta curries, Smash), while embracing a new trend for "pit-stop dining".
Since it had similar rivals, such Batchelors Snackpots, it took some time to enter the national
psyche as a mythically naff snack. By 1988, however, the writer Philip Norman was
complaining about "the patriotism which, after Pot Noodles, must rank as the Eighties' great
synthetic triumph". Early Pot Noodle commercials were defensive - it was always tastier and
more sophisticated than you imagined In 1993, the second age began when Pot Noodle
moved its advertising account to HHCL, which produced a dozen years of postmodern
campaigns. Terry, a nerdy, camcorder-carrying Welshman, asked: "How can Pot Noodle be
faffy food? It's too gorgeous." Real Pot Noodle-eating men got into fights with weedy men in
T-shirts emblazoned with "Rocket" and "Brown Rice". These campaigns were aimed at young
consumers who were irony-literate but felt excluded from middle-class, metropolitan cuisine.
They came at the same time as the core ingredient of Pot Noodle was moving upmarket, with
the arrival of trendy noodle-bar chains such as Wagamama. The problem with all this
"constructive negativity", as advertisers like to call it, was that there was only one way to go:
downmarket. Pot Noodle campaigns became more extreme. Pot Noodle once proudly
proclaimed that it was 'dirty' and helped consumers 'get the horn'. But although schoolboys
may have sniggered at the brand's smutty ad campaigns, they didn't do much to boost sales.
Now the third age has begun. According to the new ads, Pot Noodle is part of our heritage
and even of the earth itself. In 2006, Unilever abandoned its familiar risqué marketing theme
.The ‘Fuel of Britain’, campaign enabled the brand to emphasise its healthier formulation and
appeal to a wider audience. The TV advertsing campaign - Underneath the "hallowed hills" of
Crumlin in South W ales, miners are hard at work, blasting the rocks to find rich "noodle
seams". A voice-over from the valleys intones that Pot Noodle is the "fuel of Britain, isn't it".
However the Fuel of Britain TV campaign, which showed miners in a Welsh village digging
for noodles, received more than 80 complaints for being racist, many from the Welsh
community. However, the complaints were not upheld by the Advertising Standards Authority.

The new executions in 2007 were aimed at communicating the healthier product
reformulations and to broaden the consumer base. Pot Noodle has also agreed an on-pack
promotional tie-up with TV talent show The X Factor, offering consumers the chance to win
tickets to the live shows and accompanying tour as well as mobile phones and iPods. The ITV
talent show's logo will appear on the front of Pot Noodle packs. As part £10m promotional
multimedia spend Unilever continues the 'Pot Noodle mining' theme, which it introduced in
2006, to broaden the brand's appeal to mothers. The advetisment execution depicts a
reporter conducting an interview with a Pot Noodle foreman and veteran miner with a high-
pitched voice, who explains how the salt has been extracted from the noodles.
"Health and convenience are key trends and Pot Noodle is well placed to exploit that," says
McCleave. She admits that the brand needed to re-engage with consumers and remind them
why they love it. Sixteen to 30-year-old men were and are the core consumers but the revamp
is designed to win new fans, such as women and mums buying for their teenage children.
"We recognise there's an opportunity to appeal to women and reassure mums that putting
Pot Noodles in their trolley is OK," admits McCleave.

Aside from the Pot Noodle campaign, the instant potted noodles category has recorded little
promotional activity over the past year. But this doesn't mean Pot Noodle faces no
competition. With health concerns increasingly driving shopping behaviour, the brand is likely
to be challenged more often in the future by other instant snacking options that flag up their
healthy ingredients, whether they contain noodles or not Indeed, there has already been a
rise in promotional activity and NPD for premium and healthy snacking options throughout the
sector, and it's not just the smaller players that are getting in on the act. 2007 has already
seen significant NPD from the likes of Heinz and Princes. Heinz kicked off 2007 with the
launch of Big Eat - a range of microwaveable snack meals designed to appeal to teenagers
and their mother . Big Eat offers youngsters a hearty, wholesome snack, which contains no
artificial preservatives or flavours. The brand has tackled the noodle sector head on, with
specific claims that it contains less salt and more fibre than reconstituted dried noodle meals.
Priced £1.39 for a 350g pot. The varieties include Spicy Chicken Tortellini, Tomato & Roasted
Vegetable Penne, Creamy Cheese Pasta, Chunky Vegetable & Tomato Hotpot and Chicken
& Vegetable Curry. Heinz expects Big Eat to establish sales of around £5 million in its first
year. The launch was supported by a £2 million marketing campaign including TV ads and
sponsorship of the popular TV programme Ant and Dec’s Saturday Night Takeaway (which
aired immediately before The X Factor, which has been tied in to a Pot Noodle promotion),
press, outdoor activity and sampling. . The food giant Heinz expects to generate sales of £5m
in its first year - the equivalent of an 8% value share. "Big Eat is a good alternative to a very
basic Pot Noodle-dominated market," says Shaun Quinton, MBL trading manager. "The range
represents a much better quick meal for people on the go." Hot on Heinz's heels, Princes
repositioned its rival Quick Eat brand under the main Princes banner only six months after
launching it in a bid to strengthen its position in the competitive market of instant ambient
meal solution rather than a quick snack. In 2006,

New Covent Garden (best known for its chilled soup) introduced a range of risottos – offered
in a two-serving pot. This was following in 2007 by a 250g single-serve version which has

proved very popular. According to New Covent Garden itself “consumers like the idea of
eating Pot Noodle type products but want something better for them”. The launch of NCG’s
risotto is a natural development of the trend towards foods that are satisfying and warming –
but healthy. These include premium chilled soups and the strong growth in porridge
consumption (including NCG’s ready-made version). Batchelors 98% Fat Free Super Noodles
To Go range is also looking to attract female consumers. It first launched a pot format for its
Super Noodles a couple of years ago, then launched the healthy range, which brand manager
Louise Shaw reckons taps into all three key trends of convenience, enjoyment and health.
"Fat Free SuperNoodles To Go is bringing new users to the category and increasing the
average weight of existing purchases," she says. Other brands have added a premium aspect
to the sector, such as Blue Dragon's Noodle Wok - which comes in a wok-shaped container
with separately packaged ingredients - and Sharwood's recent Noodle Box launch, which
looks and feels less laddish. It is also a slight variation on the theme, calling for a micr owave,
rather than a kettle, to cook the product. The company hopes to capitalise on the trend for
single meal occasions as well as lighter eating, with younger people as one of its key targets.
Marketing manager Helen Williams say: "We make clear that it's not a Pot Noodle, and want
people to understand that it's a great nutritious filler on the go. It now has 14% market share
and is bringing people, many of them younger consumers, into the category."However, the
fact that neither the Heinz Big Eat Pots or the Covent Garden product contain a noodle
variety suggests that they are not yet ready to create a premium product that is a direct
competitor. They could be because they feel that snacking noodles are too closely associated
with the current Pot Noodle image . But none of this seems to make any difference, as Pot
Noodle sales have remained remarkably consistent over the years. In a recent survey for
Marketing magazine, Pot Noodle was voted Britain's most hated brand for the 2 nd consecutive
year, yet a quarter of the population has bought a Pot Noodle in the past year. As Joanna
Blythman shows in her recent book Bad Food Britain, the nation's so-called "foodie culture" is
a Potemkin village - a beautiful edifice of farmers' markets and gastropubs, behind which we
are all stuffing ourselves with microwaveable chips and pot snacks.


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