The repositioning of Hobnobs
A United Biscuits case study

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Page 11: Hobnob trials

McVitie's recognises that it is essential to generate trial as a tool to re-introduce the brand to many lapsed users. The best way of making sure that customers buy your product is to acquaint them with the product. With so many biscuits on sale in retail outlets, it is likely that a large number of potential customers have never actually tried all the Hobnob variants. This is particularly relevant for the brand because the actual quality of the product has been shown, by market research, to be greater than the perceived quality of the product. In other words, many consumers who tested Hobnobs as part of a market research trialling exercise found that they enjoyed the biscuits more than they thought they would. It therefore makes sense to encourage as many potential customers as possible to try Hobnobs.

Another potential strength of Hobnobs is that they sell through a wide variety of distribution outlets. Hobnobs have strong distribution in the multiples, i.e. supermarkets and grocers, However, unlike many other McVitie's brands, 50% of Hobnob sales are accredited to the Convenience and Impulse (C & I) sector. The C&I sector broadly incorporates everything which is not a multiple grocer i.e. this includes CTNs (Confectionery, Tobacconist, Newsagent), Independent Grocers and Petrol Station Forecourts.

United Biscuits | The repositioning of Hobnobs
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