Milka

THE HISTORY OF MILKA:

evolution

The history of Milka might never have seen the day if its creator, Philippe Suchard, was not returned in Switzerland following an American business plan failure. He had founded, in a first time, a confectionary in 1825 to finally moved it one year later in order to extend it and produce black chocolate bars.

After his death in 1884, his children took over the business and have continued to make it grow up. Chocolate milk Suchard has made his appearance in 1890 quickly followed by the creation of the Milka brand in 1901. Hence, Milka has been the first company to produce and sell not only milk chocolate but also chocolate bars. This famous brand simply owes its name to the contraction of two German words: Milch (milk) and Kakao (cacao). Yet, the brand architecture has been shaked over time. The original name of the product “Suchard” has disappeared little by little from packaging to let place in 1973 to the actual name: Milka. Then, Kaft Foods Company, an American multinational in the agri-food sector, has finally acquired the majority of Suchard products including Milka, in 1990.

WEDNESDAY, 23 OCTOBER 2013 – Elodie.

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MARKETING POSITIONING 

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Basically based in Switzerland, Milka is nowadays present in several countries and has already sold the huge number of 400 millions chocolate bars all around the world. Since its creation, this brand has build up its strong reputation not only by its recognisable mallow color packages, but also through its visual identity: the mallow cow.

By owning 27% of French market, Milka is the milk chocolate bars leader. Rather proud of this success, Milka can also boast about being the first chocolate brand bought in Europe. Moreover, we are tallying more than one billon euros of turnover per year all around the world, or, in other words, 150 000 products sold each hour.

The main target of Milka is nowadays not only the family but also more particularly families with children. Indeed, the handwriting logo refers to childhood and maternal tenderness, values shared by the brand. Have you already asked a child what he could be ready to do for a square of chocolate? You could be astonished by the answer! Over time, Milka has known to be loyal to its consumers’ willingness and preserve its strong personality through some core values such as; be friendly, tender, authentic and even sometimes maternal.

WEDNESDAY, 6 NOVEMBER 2013 – Elodie.

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COMMUNICATION – DARE TO BE TENDER.

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Since its beginnings, Milka is loyal to its mallow cow, which proudly represents the alpine environment. Famous cow that has already played in more than one hundred of TV adverts, since the first one launched in 1973, and translates the visual identity of the brand. Definitely a strategic choice from Milka to select a cow of the Simmental race reputed for its quality of milk. Indeed, Anne-Lise Favet, marketing director of Kraft Foods France, explains that “guarantee the milk origin, its traceability with farms in the Alps, is a way to reassure consumers”.

This strong link with mountains has give birth to the majority of Milka advertising campaigns backgrounds. Deeply associated with the snow, Alps are also related to the ski world and have generated some sponsorship. Definitely in harmony with its image value, Milka is proud to sponsor, since 1996, the world cup of Alpine ski, the world cup of snowboard and even the world ski championship.

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Moreover, aware of the social networks importance; Milka has decided to focus its presence on a Facebook page gathering 7,293,009 likes. Beyond this huge number, Milka hides a well-defined marketing strategy. Branding and create a strong relationship with its consumers, offer fun, engaging the brand Facebook community by using their opinions and feelings, positive or negative in order to always respect their needs and expectations about the brand and its various products.

Milka is not only present in TV adverts or on social networks but also everywhere where its consumers’ eyes or ears could be; billboards, magazines, radio etc.

MONDAY, 18 NOVEMBER 2013 – Elodie.

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THE LAST SQUARE

milka-last-square

Everybody knows how precious is the last chocolate square… Milka too. This is why the brand has done the crazy bet to launched an innovative campaign in August 2013 inviting its consumers to share with someone one square of chocolate by sending it by mail. This incredible idea has been whispered to Milka by Buzzman, a communication agency. Milka tends to demonstrate over the years the importance of sharing, love and kindness between and within its community and this campaign could have been the major opportunity to convince French consumers to also be generous.

The concept is simple; you only have to buy a customized chocolate bar, clearly recognizable by its design, go on a dedicated website; www.lederniercarre.fr, inform your unique code located in the bar package and choose to whom your last square will be sent between 1 and 4 weeks.

 

They have dared to play the game, what about you?…

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However, this campaign has had some controversial feedbacks. The highly innovative approach of the brand through this campaign has initiated a kind of mini-revolution in people minds. By this way a failure is appeared and “thelastsquare” has created misunderstandings, deceptions or even shocked some people outraged by the brand’s decision.

“I am so disappointed, I only received a crumbled chocolate square” — “How Milka can dare launch a such idea? Where is the eco-friendly side?”

This campaign has been perceived useless and has fueled many discussions between Milka consumers. Lots of them did not have understood the principle of this campaign, the main idea of sharing has completely been forgot and Milka has been forced to incur its customers’ wrath.

MONDAY, 25 NOVEMBER 2013 – Elodie.

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CO-BRANDING

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Initially highly famous for its chocolate bars, Milka has extended since 2008 its range of products by using the co-branding strategy. Daim, Philadelphia, Oréo, Crispello, Tassimo and more recently Tuc are the brands to which Milka has decided to rally its cause. This approach has allowed to attract a new target of consumers and increase its market share.

Beyond this primary reason, another point is definitely clear; Milka wants to create to new need by creating new products and, by this way, directly increase its sales. Indeed, there will always have curious people to discover innovations combining two quality brands sharing more or less the same values.

MONDAY, 2 DECEMBER 2013 – Elodie.

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Sources:  Milka websiteFrench article about the brand Milka, Challenge’s article, the story of milka’s strategy.

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