Over the last couple of years the traditional trade magazines have approached Private Brands with skepticism and a bit of elitism. Private Brands are not real brands has been the traditional wisdom. Plus what publisher in his or her right mind wants to alienate the CPG’s that have driven the ad business and more importantly bought ads in these magazines.
So it is particularly interesting to see Walmarts Great Value included in this article form Advertising Age as one of “America’s Hottest Brands.” According to the article: Advertising Age Honors the Top Brands of the Year — and the Brains Behind Them. The inclusion in this list places Great Value alongside some of serious “Real” brands including: Panera Bread, Barnes & Noble, Bing, Cover Girl, Digorno, Jet Blue and Mountain Dew just to name a few.
Walmart Great Value: an America’s Hottest Brands Case Study
Private label was always a big business, but never a big priority for Walmart. Clearly it’s become bigger in both regards under Andrea Thomas.
Ms. Thomas, 45, has led the massive re-stage of what Walmart rightly bills as America’s largest package-goods brand, Great Value, with sales estimated around $10 billion. It’s easily bigger than all of Hershey Foods, Ms. Thomas’ last stop, where she was VP-global chocolate.
Walmart doesn’t release numbers for the brand. But the re-staging of Great Value has had a substantial impact since it began rolling out in April — be it from the stores, where the stark white packaging has made the brand far more obvious, to third-party numbers.