Creative Inspiration To Differentiate! Key Messages & Packaging

Posted in Content, Creative, Marketing Strategy, Paid Marketing, Public Relations

One of the first questions we ask prospective clients is, “What makes your product or service superior, exceptional, unique, distinctive, extraordinary, brilliant, cooler and/or whatever?” Who would have thought we could rediscover universal PR, marketing, advertising truths set in a lovely dairy-induced photo-essay.

When it comes to yogurt, Greek seems to be the new black. Our initial lesson from the supermarket scene is to hop on the obvious trend-bandwagon and ride those social cycles! Every brand and their brother has a Greek strain of dairy delight. Sometimes to distinguish means to avoid disqualification by making sure to blend with vernacular trends.

Greek, Middle Eastern or Minnesotan farmland, most yogurts market to vertical preferences, in this case (image below) including fruit varietal, style, flavor, and vertical orientation of fruit (on the bottom). Uphold idiosyncratic qualities to suggest advantages and play to tastes.


Be seasonably distinctive. It’s autumn in Minnesota… Thanksgiving time. And holiday time means pumpkin pie yogurt! Use contrasting colors to distinguish packaging from a crowded market field. There are not many bright orange yogurt packages in the cooler, SO our pumpkin patch packaging sparkles like a spotlight in bright contrast to an otherwise boring sea of all-the-same labels. Remember to create unique packaging, which stands out, especially if there’s a visual palate to associate colors with other defining attributes like seasonality.


We live in an age where differentiators can mean to highlight what bad stuff is NOT in a product. There’s not fat in this Greek Yogurt. Even in its no-fatness, Fage chooses to call out benefits of a desirable manufacturing. Fage yogurt is strained baby, not lumpy!


Dannon steps right up to tell health-minded shoppers of its physical benefits. Yep, these 80 calories of Greek dairy bliss will make you light and fit. Makes me want to strap on my Garmin tracker and jet!


Middle path marketing speaks to yogurt consumers who watch weight and STILL crave a bit more of a creamy somethin’ somethin’ surprise inside. Yoplait knows to underscore new and improved products as such.


Promote biological and environmental responsibility. When it comes to yogurt, Chobani appeals to Whole Foods types by pushing NON-GMO buttons.


Offer in-the-face packaging with differentiating money deals. I love a deal! Do you? Doesn’t everyone? 🙂 Then, tell prospective customers that choosing this product is the natural thing to do.


Tout product-alternatives to cultivate new markets. Rice and soy recipes can be used to make yogurt products. Lactose intolerant wish-they-could-have-yogurt lovers may find their mock-dairy Zen with Silk’s Yogurt Alternative.


Whether we’re talking no-nothin’-in-it-at-all-marketing….


…or somethin’ you can put in your bookbag and take with ya’ G0Gurt…


…look no further than the supermarket aisle for creative inspiration to differentiate your product.


[The author thanks Lund’s/Byerly’s grocery store, with gratitude for taking a risk on downtown St. Paul and gracing the neighborhood with such lovely food.]

  • Troy Sterling Woody

    Great examples of differential marketing from the diary aisle! Also a good demonstration of differential marketing using McCarthy’s 4 P’s. The principal functionality of Product, Price, Promotion and Placement are alive and kicking in this yogurt section.

    Product: To keep pushing forward in the Product life-cycle, some of these brand’s original lines are probably in decline, so they need to add fresh products with line-depth or line extension, to exploit the hot Greek trend and seasonal flavors.

    Price: The “Deal” was promoted in the labeling to entice consumers to buy the multi-pack rather than the individual portion. I’ll bet it if we looked at shelf pricing here, we’d see some numbers that reflect the ‘customer perceived value’, and recognized ‘price elasticity’ based on common size and brand association.

    Promotion: Several of these brands are regulars in newspaper inserts/coupons, TV advertising, etc.

    Placement: Distribution and placement so that the product is at a place which is convenient for consumer access it and compare brands, prices, and various lines or flavors, Greek or otherwise, is strong here as well. Grocers are buying big, well lit, many shelved cooler cases just for yogurt-sized products that demand greater and greater floor space.

    Thank you for this article with the colorful, pint-sized examples or case-studies in differentiation and the 4 P’s of marketing!

    ~Troy Sterling Woody
    Sterling Media Northwest

    • Marty Weintraub

      WOW, it’s been a while since I’ve thought about McCarthy’s 4 P’s. Guessing I’ve lived marketing theory for so long that it’s a way of professional life. You’re welcome for the “Pint” size article and we’re grateful for the thoughtful comment. I’m sure our readers will enjoy your thinking and I’ll go find you on Twitter now. Hope to see you again in these threads.