Two Sides to Every… Shower?

October 6, 2008

 

By Ryan Stredney

P.R Specialist – Data & Insights

 

Information Resources, Inc.

 

We’ve all seen the soap industry evolve and flourish over time… from the messy bars of old, leaving their residue all over bathtub ledges between uses to today’s convenient body washes in their snap top tubes and ever-expanding variety of aromas.  But what about the means for applying these modern shower gels to one’s body?  Wash cloths just aren’t cutting it anymore for guys and girls alike… too long to lather up and you’re left with a skimpy wash surface that just doesn’t have enough exfoliating power to refresh anyone’s skin from the rugged grime of the daily grind.

 

As alternatives were developed to appeal to the fairer gender, they weren’t really doing all that much to sell themselves to men in the marketplace.  We’re talking about the loofahs, sponges and poofs you find hanging on the ladies’ side of the shower, detailed with feminine designs, colors and floral scents… truly made for the smoother, gentler, more luxurious skin that women possess.  Granted they’re a step in the right direction, providing a textured surface for a deeper scrub and more lather generating layers to give everybody’s body a once over, but the modern man is always on the lookout for something stronger and stacked with more machismo.

 

Now AXE has taken that concept even further and come out with a solution developed specifically for guys… The new AXE Detailer Shower Tool.  A deep scrub side to clean your rough and tough spots, forced to hybrid with a gentle mesh side to clean even your most sensitive areas.  Fused all together with circular, rubber grips that conjure up the image of auto rims, the dual-sided shower tool is ideal for a man’s needs and designed to encourage an overall more efficient shower experience.

 

The gear-head-esque name is certainly more appealing to men right off the bat, but the Detailer lives up to its billing as well.  The rubber grip gives guys something substantial to hold onto, the traditional mesh area provides plenty of lathering potential, and the red scouring pad opposite is good for thick skin like heels, knees, palms and elbows. Backed by a strong television marketing campaign promoting attractive masculinity and rugged Americana, AXE is constantly looking for new ways to score points and grab market share in the hygiene industry, and with the first scrubber designed specifically with men in mind, they may just have a winner with the new Detailer Shower Tool.

 

Additional Information can be found at: http://www.theaxeeffect.com/flash.html

 

Contact: ryan.stredney@infores.com


This Bud’s Good for What Ale’s You…

September 23, 2008

By Ryan Stredney

PR Specialist – Data & Insights

Information Resources, Inc.

The time has arrived for Anheuser-Busch’s first foray into ale brewing, the straight-up American Amber style of Budweiser American Ale. Scheduled to be released this week on draught in select markets nationwide and in bottles at the end of the month, Bud American Ale was created by A-B brewmasters to deliver a rich, amber color and a hoppy, citrus-hinted aroma that’s full-bodied, but not too heavy or bitter. Remarked as a pleasant balance of robust flavor and well-rounded taste, Bud American Ale serves as an alternative offshoot to the flagship Budweiser signature lagers.

The American Ale was a beer concept A-B originally kicked around back in 1997 in response to the success of Sam Adams Boston Lager. Considering that crafts are once again gaining momentum as the traditional Bud juggernauts look for an fresh and innovative niche to propel them off the static domestic brew sales plateau, A-B is now poised to launch the ale mainstream, especially in response to the proposed Miller offerings of late, a trio of craft-style light beers that were selectively tested over the summer months before being pulled back after initial interest peaked and faded. Rolling out an “American Ale” would also seem to be a natural branding tie-in with A-B’s recent efforts to leverage the craftsmanship and national heritage of the Bud label.

“Budweiser American Ale has the full-bodied taste profile of the amber ale style, yet is remarkably smooth and balanced,” says Eric Beck, brewmaster for Budweiser American Ale. “It’s an ale that’s distinctly American in character, and the result is a beer both traditional lager and craft beer drinkers can enjoy.”

The gist of the last sentiment may be what makes or breaks this latest offering for A-B. With only a handful of reviews currently out on Bud American Ale posted by those privileged enough to have sampled it, the notes are pretty consistent: A pretty decent ale all around, pleasant aroma, tasty and does the trick.

The American Ale is definitely a bold step for the manufacturer to take with their iconic flagship label, and A-B’s enormous distribution efforts will surely lead to tremendous initial success. Its set be supported in the marketplace by a substantial targeted media plan consisting of television, print, outdoor and Internet, along with exclusive sampling events and on-premise merchandising. Will Budweiser’s claim that Bud American Ale is “more than a new taste… it’s a whole new tradition” hold up? Only time will tell…

Additional Information can be found at: www.budweiseramericanale.com

Contact: ryan.stredney@infores.com


Gourmet Chocolates that Toe the Party Lines

September 15, 2008

 

By Ryan Stredney

P.R Specialist – Data & Insights

 

Information Resources, Inc.

 

Looking for a unique way to support your presidential candidate down the stretch?  Limited edition handcrafted chocolate gift boxes from Burdick Chocolate can help you flaunt your political pride .  Available in unique assortments for both national parties, the chocolates come in either quarter or half-pound boxes, stamped with either a donkey or elephant wax seal and tied in a patriotic blue or red commemorative ribbon.

Burdick even went so far as to derive the unique flavors for each assortment from various facets of each candidate’s background. The box of “Obama Campaign Chocolates” includes Kenyan Coffee, Kansas Corn Crunch, Tennessee Sour Mash and Hawaiian Pineapple, representative of the state where Sen. Obama was born.  On the flipside, the gourmet McCain box features Hot Pepper Tequila, Peanut Butter, Kentucky Rye and Arizona Citrus, drawing its inspiration from the state Sen. McCain represents.

Additionally, Burdick is also displaying the sales “votes cast” for each assortment on their website.  Currently the Obama selection has been outselling its opponent by almost a 3 to 1 count, a result surely all democratic supporters would eagerly welcome come election time.  It’s not too late for the Republicans to make a stand, however, as the campaign themed chocolates will be available up through the November election. 

Yet another unique spin for the confection industry to boost sales by marketing themed candies to coincide with timely media events, similar to the movie-based editions of various sweets that are seemingly becoming more prevalent these days. Can’t help but wonder… if you’re particularly fond of certain flavors and curious to sample the variety in the opposing party’s assortment, who wins out in your personal run-off:  The support for your candidate or the urge of your sweet tooth?    

Additional Information can be found at: http://www.burdickchocolate.com/selection2008bios.asp

 

Contact: ryan.stredney@infores.com


Hits and Misses…

August 14, 2008

 

By Ryan Stredney
PR Specialist – Data & Insights

Information Resources, Inc.
 

The Schlitz beer brand, currently owned by Pabst Brewing Company, was recently reintroduced, brewed using the original formula dating back to 1849, to a limited number of cities in the US.  It can now be purchased at select locations throughout Minneapolis, Chicago and Milwaukee, the city originally claimed to have been “made famous” by the brand. 

 

Once claiming the top spot as the world’s most popular beer from the turn of the century until the 1950’s, Schlitz fell out of favor with the public in the late 1970’s as new ownership attempted to increase production by shortening the fermentation process at the brewery.  Subsequently, the beer lost both its foam and flavor, turning away even the most loyal enthusiasts with its newly acquired flat, stale aftertaste.  Schlitz tried to counteract the effects by adding seaweed extract, only to further compound on the problem as the extract would turn solid and chunky, developing into sediment in the bottles as they sat on store shelves.

 

But the Schlitz of old has now returned as Pabst has revived the original formula, succeeding in bringing back once faithful followers with the nostalgic flavor they had long forgotten.  And the flavor isn’t the only thing to return, as Schlitz is once again labeled with the traditional script logo, set in the maroon and gold packaging of the 60’s.  They’ve even revived the old Schlitz slogan for promotion in select markets… “Go for the Gusto”.  In Milwaukee, stores are already selling out of their stock faster than it can be shelved, some even establishing waiting lists for customers looking to get even just a six-pack of beer with that original Schlitz flavor to take them back to the days of old.

 

On the flipside, MillerCoors LLC has decided to take a step back and re-tinker with the craft-style spin-offs it had recently brought to various test markets.  The varieties on Miller Lite: including wheat, amber and blonde ale, mark the first joint brand intro since SABMiller’s Miller Brewing teamed with Molson Coors Brewing Co. to better compete against industry-leader Anheuser-Busch Cos. Inc.  However, even after a strong initial interest developed back in April, further testing showed a need for stronger consumer awareness and improved positioning in the eyes of the brewer.

 

More information on these two topics can be found in the following articles:

http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/25970479/

http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/25951193/

 

Contact email: ryan.stredney@infores.com