Godiva Chocaltier is launching a new image campaign to move the brand beyond occasion gift giving. The print and outdoor campaign breaking this month tries to position the brand as a “designer accessory.” One ad uses the line: “Flaunt your passion.”
Here’s the problem. Godiva has become a ubiquitous medium priced chocolate that has no real back story to the brand. Chocolate fans have so many choices. For the quick hit, there is every candy rack in every market, bodega and gas station. Then, there is the chocolate fan that looks for “special chocolate” that is artisanal, organic, small-batch. You get the idea. Scharffen Berger, a brand and company based in San Francisco now owned by Hershey, is an example of a brand that captured that second market.
Godiva shops are in many shopping malls. I find them in hallmark stores. And I’m pretty sure they get pitched to me to add to a mail-order flower order when I am sending flowers. I have to say I don’t often see a lot of people in those Godiva stores when I mall shop. And when I have stopped in to them, I haven’t been much inpired to spend more than I would for a Hershey bar. The chocolate seems more about the gold box than it does about the chocolate.
Pricing is premium. Premium brands that are neither mass market, nor luxury are in a tough spot. It’s neither fish, nor foul. They just don’t seem special enough to me to merit the price. It’s Whitman Sampler in a nicer box. Buick is an example of what I mean.
The holiday-themed ad for Godiva says “Let the decadence begin” as a slogan, and shows a woman gazing at an enormous box of chocolates surrounded by green and red gift ribbons. Okay, I’m a man. But I just don’t know many professional women who would think I splurged on them by buying a box of Godiva.
This is a brand, after all, owned by Campbell Soup until that company succeeds in selling it. That’s the company’s plan.
The ads are pretty. But I just don’t see Godiva as a brand, or even a product, that makes me think…Mmm Mmm good. And otheer than the calories, it doesn;t seem like much of an indulgence. It’s going to be a tough sale.