- Haagen-Dazs, the 56-year old ice cream icon, is taking on its biggest brand overhaul in its history by changing its packaging, introducing a brand-new logo, revamping its 800-plus global stores and rolling out a new global advertising campaign, according to Business Insider.
- The changes were made to stay relevant for a millennial audience that is more engaged with brands that have similar values and strong, relatable stories. Haagen-Dazs wants consumers to view the brand as modern and vibrant, not classy and stuffy. The new packaging is not expected in the United States until next summer.
- "The world of luxury is changing. It isn't as much about conspicuous consumption anymore, it's more about craftsmanship, authenticity and the story behind the brand," Jennifer Jorgensen, Haagen-Dazs' vice president and marketing director, told Business Insider. "The brand just wasn't representing what consumers wanted it to be anymore. We knew we needed to modernize."
Ice cream is a booming business, with each U.S. consumer eating around 23 pounds of the product annually. According to the International Dairy Foods Industry, the U.S. ice cream industry contributes more than $39 billion to the national economy and creates more than 188,000 jobs. It's no wonder that Nestle, Unilever, General Mills and others have a lot at stake.
The challenge for a premium brand like Haagen-Dazs — Nestle uses it under license from General Mills only in the U.S. and Canada — is that while it may continue to do well with an older audience that grew up with the ice cream, it was overdue for a refresh that would make it trendy with the millennial crowd.
The new design changes the color of the Haagen-Dazs logo to burgundy instead of gold, black and white. A colorful design mirroring the flavor inside is at the top of the package while the bottom is largely white space with only the name of the flavor written and a picture of what is inside — the strawberry cheesecake shows a slice of the decadent dessert item, for example.
Jorgensen told Business Insider the new packaging was not only bold, bright and colorful, but something that young millennials could easily tweet or post on Instagram. To promote the new layout, a new tagline was introduced — "Make everyday extraordinary"— and the changes were discussed on the ice cream's social media account and through ads on Facebook and Instagram.
As Halo Top's meteoric success in the frozen dessert space has shown, consumers love its packaging with a simple design and the calorie content plastered right on the front. Fans have promoted and discussed the brand on social media with much of the startup's power coming from its cult status on Instagram. Halo Top experienced a 2,500% boost in sales from 2015 to 2016, with more than 13.5 million pints sold for a total of $66.1 million. Unilever's Breyers followed with a similar idea.
Haagen-Dazs knows old stodgy packaging and methods used to connect with older generations aren't going to necessarily work for millennials who are engaged on social media and often view brands differently. To reach the younger generations, a hip, modern and forward-looking package is needed to grab their attention and position it as a viable alternative to ice creams like Unilever's Ben and Jerry's with its splashy packaging and clever names like Cherry Garcia, Chunky Monkey and The Tonight Dough.
Label overhauls also are often an effective way to increase sales, as Coca-Cola found with its "Share a Coke" campaign where people could personalize the beverage with their name. In 2014, the company saw an increase in sales after it ran it in the U.S. Nestle's Lean Cuisine redesign helped drive a sales increase of $58 million in the following year. Haagen-Dazs was smart to change the way consumers view the brand and better position it for future success with new generations of fans. Failing to do so would leave the six-decades old product at risk of melting away as other ice cream brands bring on the heat.