UK retailer goes head-to-head with branded manufacturers

Posted by Daniel Palmer on 29th September 2009

UK retailer Sainsbury is pitting its own-brand products with branded equivalents as part of a major in-store sampling spree for its Switch and Save campaign.

‘Taste Test Challenge’ stalls will be set up at 400 of Sainsbury’s supermarkets across the UK, at which a selection of own-brand products will be pitted against branded equivalents to see which customers prefer.

Customers will be asked to put a token in one of two corresponding tubes so people can see whether own-brand or branded products are favoured, the company said this week.

“We are confident in the quality of our products so we’re happy to carry out this test in such a public way,” Gwyn Burr, Sainsbury’s customer director, said. “We have spent so much time improving our entire range that we believe customers will vote for Sainsbury’s own-brand time and time again.”

Switch and Save was introduced last year, with the aim of encouraging people to try out more of Sainsbury’s 15,000 own-brand products.

Burr added: “The economic climate has prompted customers to think much more carefully about the products they put into their trolleys. In our own brand products, they have found that they can pay less for products of equal quality.”

“We believe that this campaign helps make customers more aware of the great value they can find at Sainsbury’s.”

In addition to the sampling activity, the campaign will be supported with a television advert focusing on three products – yoghurts, high juice and ice cream. Online, direct marketing and PR activity will also be included. It will be run in line with a coupon scheme – relating to both branded and private label goods – to encourage loyalty to their stores.

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