Friday, July 6, 2007

TV & Candy

The broadcast upfront wrapped up last month. Overall, the Networks take increased compared to the prior year. A couple of the themes this year were accountability (i.e. comercial ratings) and getting/giving credit for DVR playback. The result of this year's marketplace is frustrating and doesn't seem to make much sense. What if these same principle's applied in other parts of life? Que the dream sequence ...

I like Sweetarts. My favorite is the big 6 oz concession sized box. There’s nothing quite as sweet (pun intended) as relaxing after work, watching the ballgame and popping some sweetarts out of the big box. It’s what I like to do.

Many people have told me that there are several other candy manufacturers who are coming out with exciting new treats. The offerings are endless. Some of these new treats can tell me exactly how much of a sugar high I’ll get, how long it will last, and what type of crash will follow. They are very measurable. These new treats are stealing away many former Sweetart loyalists. But so far I’ve stayed the course. I love my Sweetarts.

My normal 6oz concession sized box cost $1.99. Recently, I went to Target to pick up my weekly supply and I noticed that the price was $2.49 per box. I asked the smiling, friendly-looking Target employee in the red shirt what was up with the 25% price increase. He was unapologetic and told me that if I had committed to buying the box several months earlier, he could have sold it to me for $1.99, but there is simply not that much candy left, so they raised the price. Imagine that.

He went on to tell me that in the coming year, the Candy Research Association is changing the way they measure the amount of Sweetarts in a box. As a result, the size of the package had been reduced to 5 ounces. But the cost is still $2.49. I couldn’t believe it. I asked him if I misunderstood. I need to pay 25% more and get 15% less? Yes, it’s true, he explained.

So here I am standing in the candy aisle at Target when I had a realization: I’ve been a loyal customer for many years, yet Sweetarts is charging me more and giving me less at a time when I have more options than ever before. Should I continue to hand over more and more money to satisfy my craving for Sweetarts? Or is it time to consider Mike and Ike’s?

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