Last week, Ronald Bown, the President of Asoex, presented the positive results of the promotion campaign carried out in the 2016-2017 season in the markets of Brazil, United States, South Korea, Japan, and China during a meeting the Asoex Cherry Committee.
Bown presented the information, along with Cristian Tagle, Chairman of the Cherry Committee, Ignacio Caballero, Assistant Marketing Manager of Asoex, and Claudia Moreno and Barbara Sepulveda of ProChile’s Sectorial Brands.
“We knew that we were on the right track when we decided to carry out this promotional campaign, which is unique, required a 5 million dollar investment, and was specially focused on the Chinese consumer. The results in this first year of activities are very positive. For example, we achieved a 65.5 percent increase in retail sales,” said the President of Asoex.
Bown added: “These results, which were obtained during the first year of the campaign, show the importance and necessity of continuing the promotions, especially when our industry plans to export 160 thousand tons within the next 5 years, which forces us to promote consumption beyond the period of the Chinese New Year,” he said.
China: Worth every bite
China accounts for 82% of all Chilean cherry exports. It is the main destination of these fruits worldwide; thus, the promotional campaign was focused on this Asian nation.
Ignacio Caballero, Assistant Marketing Manager of Asoex, said that the slogan to boost the consumption of a premium product in this campaign was ‘Worth Every Bite’, which highlighted the freshness, large size and red color of the cherries; attributes highly valued by the Chinese market.
“The goal of our campaign in China was to increase consumption through an increase in the rotation of regular consumers of our cherries, but also to attract new consumers. In addition, we wanted to position the ‘Chilean Cherries’ brand to enhance our country as one of the main suppliers of cherries, which we achieved in this first stage,” said Caballero.
“The campaign was held in 37 cities and 22 regions in China, impacting 91 million consumers. The promotional activities took place from November 2016 to mid-February this year. We started with the pre-sale of our cherries at T-Mall’s Double 11 and then developed actions, such as a Flashmob that was very well received, within the framework of the Christmas Holidays.”
The Deputy Marketing Manager also highlighted the tastings and exhibitions at retail outlets, as well as the strategic location of advertising in places such as the Beijing Metro, residential lifts, on-line television, and Mega Leds in buildings and other high-traffic public areas.
“This has been the first year of this new campaign in China and we have achieved good results. More importantly, we have learned what we must do to improve the campaign. There’s still much to be done in this market to increase consumption to the rates that the industry needs. For the success of this activity, it is vital to understand that its results are in the medium term and that it is important to continue with the promotional campaign in the coming years. ProChile has pledged its support for another season. Our goal is to present these results to the entire industry and to hold meetings with the largest number of exporters to incorporate them into this important country project, which will allow us to face future challenges. We invite all the interested parties to contact us so that we can coordinate future presentations and conversations on the cherry promotion campaigns in China and other markets,” he said.
The promotion campaign was highly valued by China’s retail and online sales sectors, as it helped create product awareness and increased sales. As a result, they agreed on the need to continue with the actions.
“The promotion campaign was very successful. We’ve seen a lot of advertising of Chilean cherries in the city, and that is very positive for us,” said Michael Zhang, Fresh Fruit Sales Manager at JD.com.
Meanwhile, Shawn Liu of T.Mall / Mr.Fresh stated: “The media support of Chilean cherries increased sales significantly in T-mall-Mr.Fresh, and also contributed to the creation of a New concept.”
“Overall, the quality of this season’s Chilean cherries was good. The results of the promotional activities at the point of sale were also good. Total sales this season increased by 20-30 percent over last year,” said Peter Zhu, General Manager of Pagoda.
“Point-of-sale activities led to a significant increase in sales at Walmart stores this year, when compared to last year. The promotional activities took place in many more cities and more outlets. Cherry sales showed a significant increase in the premises where the promotions were conducted when compared to the shops where no actions were performed,”said Magret Hong, Senior Buying Manager at Walmart China.
The 2016-2017 Chilean cherries promotional campaign stood out because of its large scope, as it took place in many cities and reached many consumers, as well as because of the varied nature of the actions developed. In Brazil and the United States, Chile conducted promotion actions at the point of sale in important retail stores. They also used social networks to reach more than 11 thousand people in the Brazilian market, and more than 630 thousand in the United States.
In South Korea, a new market for Chilean cherries, Chile strengthened its promotional activities at supermarkets, such as E-mart, where the Chilean Ambassador to Korea and the Director of ProChile in Seoul participated in the promotion. “The goal of the actions in Korea was to publicize the availability of Chilean cherries in the market, as well as their quality, safety, and contributions to health,” said Caballero.
The representative of Asoex also said that they would develop a consumer study in Korea and Japan in the next few months to gain a better understanding of the potential of both markets.
If you wish to obtain more details about the campaign, please contact Ignacio Caballero, Assistant Manager of Marketing at Asoex at his E-mail: Icaballero@asoex.cl