A BIG WOW FROM WHITMAN'S
Imagine a big box of candy. Now
imagine a very big box, so big that it's outside of a normal
framework and looks like a prop instead of a package that's for
sale, a mock-up of a box of candy, or something Andy Warhol
painted after he finished his Campbell Soup. The box is
something you might notice and think about, but not something
This 40-ounce box measures 23" x 13"
x 3". On a regular supermarket shelf, it looks out of place --
like it belongs in Costco or a special store for clowns or on
the shelves with huge packages of toilet paper. When I noticed
the super-size Whitman samplers on an end aisle, I shook my
head, and went on to stand in the checkout line. I don't like
Whitman chocolates, and haven't purchased a Sampler in years,
but something made me turn around and look at it a second time
and decide that my kids and grandchildren would think the giant
sized box was cool or funny for Thanksgiving and I went back and
carried one carefully to my cart. After I put it in my cart, the
shopper behind me went back, got one a box for her basket, and
thanked me. Then another women went back and got a box for her
basket. She thanked me too.
I think they were thanking me for
demonstrating that this oversized box was actually something
that was okay to buy and might be fun to give.
I think the package is cool and fun,
and that the ShopRite price of $16 made it a good gift value. I
also think it's too much of a stretch (pun intended) to sell
well without some positioning -- a picture of holiday family
sharing candy from this super box would have helped sell a lot
more. Any bigger, and I couldn't have gotten it from the shelf
to my shopping card. As it was, I had to stand it on end or
diagonally to fit in the cart.
My kids and grandchildren loved it.
But when a package is too far from the norm, in this case too
big to be a real box of candy, marketers should supply some
in-store advertising to help shoppers stretch their minds to