1. Understanding the brand: New worlds to conquer
Our client Friesland Campina makes a tasty range of Dutch cheeses under an existing but little-used brand name, Royal Hollandia. It has great ambitions to succeed abroad, starting with Spain and the land which cheeses fear the most: France. There are no strong Dutch brands here, and although cheeses such as Gouda, Edam and Maasdam are widely sold, they are seen as cheap, rather industrial products for children.
Friesland Campina set out to change this picture and re-invent Royal Hollandia as a brand for French and Spanish cheese-lovers to believe in.
2. Understanding the consumer: Looking for conviviality
France is a very challenging market for cheese imports, but the research in this country showed that despite - or rather because of - people’s reverence for traditional fromages, there was a clear opening for a strong new Dutch brand. We learned that both the French and Spanish view the Dutch as healthy, outdoor and family-oriented people, with a modern and progressive approach to life. This impression also extended to their cheeses, which could represent an occasion and an emotion that was increasingly missed: family togetherness.
3. Defining the task: Selling Dutch character
This project is about selling the image of one country to others. Our task was to blend together the landscape of positive consumer beliefs about Dutch cheese - a mild but characterful taste, an authentic cheese culture and a product of the lush, green Dutch countryside – with a ‘typical Dutch’ personality – respectful of tradition but also playful and open.
And how do you sell authenticity? In the supermarket the reputation of being a ‘proper’ cheese is made at the counter, where wedges or slices are cut from big cheese wheels by hand in front of the customer. But this does little for brand awareness, which is built from high visibility packaging in the self-service shelves.
4. Creating: Tradition, colour and fun.
Starting with a blank sheet of paper requires a different way of thinking: The new brand story must be born fully-formed, its symbols and codes meaningful yet original.
We tested a range of designs in France and in Spain, looking for best fit with the brand proposition. Our friends at research consultants BrainJuicer identified our ‘from Holland with love’ design concept as the strongest option, combining Dutch tradition and authenticity with a strong sense of tenderness and affection.
In the final design we’ve combined two aspects of traditional Dutch craftsmanship - Delftware and oil painting – but given both a light-hearted twist through the use of the ‘kissing children‘ motif and the vivid style of landscape artist Nancy van den Boom. In our point-of-sale design we have allowed for clear branding but also turned up the volume on the painted scenes, creating lots of impact and a colourful personality in-store.
5. Believing: The Spanish go Dutch
So far, so good! Friesland Campina has just launched the new Royal Hollandia brand into the Spanish market and the trade and consumer response has been excellent. We’re confident that the brand will continue to flourish when its Dutch charm hits the plates of France shortly.
Lesley Cordial, International Marketing Director: “We’re delighted with the way Osborne Pike approached this challenge, creating a surprising number of distinctive design solutions to our brief. This allowed consumers to tell us exactly how their positive feelings about Dutch cheese and culture could be captured by a new brand. The final design turned out to be very strong, attractive and differentiating for in store promotions as well, creating a whole world. As a result we are now working with OP on several new projects in International markets”
Lesley, you’re a star!