Brand Index: Resisting a Ritz? It’s crackers not to learn this lesson

Stephan Shakespeare
Follow Stephan

WHO can resist a Ritz? That was the question in TV ads way back in the 1970s for the famous crackers. Mondelez International is bringing Ritz Crackers back to TV for first time in 30 years. In an attempt to make the brand relevant to younger consumers, the company announced recently a six-week cam­paign to promote the launch of its Ritz Breaks snacks.

Last year, the Ritz product range was re-introduced through co-branded ventures with sister brand Cadbury. However, as can be seen when compared to fellow snack brands – McVities and Jaffa Cakes (owned by United Biscuits) – there is much work to be done.
Looking at YouGov’s Buzz scores, which measure positive/negative response to a brand in the past two weeks, McVities and Jaffa Cakes have out-performed Ritz by a fair margin.

Since 1 January, Ritz’s average Buzz score is +1.3, while McVities is on +3.2 and Jaffa Cakes +6.5.

The benefit of a strong advertising strategy is underlined when looking at United Biscuits brand campaigns starting in February, promoting its Digestive and Jaffa Cake ranges.

Our Ad Awareness metric, which asks whether people have seen or heard a brand’s advert, shows that from its launch in early February, the Jaffa Cakes score rose from +2.0 to +7.5, and there was a similar story for McVities, increasing from +3.1 to a high of +7.4.

But without a prominent campaign during this time, Ritz had an average score of +1.1. What does this mean for sales?

Look at the BrandIndex Purchase Intent metric. Again the UB brands exceed the level achieved by Ritz. Since early February, Jaffa Cakes has an average of +4.7 and McVities scores +5.2, while Ritz lags behind on +0.8.

Stephan Shakespeare is the chief executive of YouGov