Ben & Jerry's Swot

Topics: Marketing, Distribution, Marketing plan Pages: 5 (1527 words) Published: November 9, 2010
SWOT Analysis
Ben & Jerry’s is an innovative leader in the super premium ice cream industry. They have a product line that consists of ice cream, low-fat ice cream, frozen yogurt, sorbet, and a few novelty products. All of their products are sold through supermarkets, grocery stores, convenience stores, franchised Ben & Jerry’s scoop shops, and restaurants. Ben & Jerry’s also incorporates a commitment toward being a socially active and environmentally responsible ice cream manufacturer.

Ben & Jerry’s pride themselves on being the leader in the super premium ice cream manufacturer industry. Super premium ice cream is characterized by a greater richness and density, than that, of economy ice cream, and demands a premium price to follow. Ben & Jerry’s focus their efforts on their super premium ice cream. The core competencies of Ben & Jerry’s are: its innovative flavors, it’s all natural ingredients, and its commitment toward being socially active and environmentally responsible. The distinctive competencies of Ben & Jerry’s are: it’s innovative flavoring and product names, their all-natural ingredients, and its socially conscious public image and their environmental awareness. Each of these distinctive competencies, are the factors that play a huge role in sustaining a competitive advantage over their rivals. (Haagen-Dazs and Dreyer’s) Ben & Jerry’s are able to sustain a competitive advantage by frequently innovating its flavors and products names, which makes it difficult for its rivals to imitate their product offerings. They employ names such as: Rain Forest Crunch, Cherry Garcia, Wavy Gravy, and Toffee Crunch. These innovative names and the fact that they use all-natural ingredients provides them with a strong competitive advantage because customers view their products to be of high-quality and unique as well.

Ben & Jerry’s social mission states that: “To operate the company in a way that actively recognizes the central role that business plays in the structure of society by initiating innovative ways to improve the quality of life of a broad community, local, national and international”. “Caring Capitalism”. Ben & Jerry’s takes an active role socially by, distributing free samples, hosting fun-oriented special attractions and educational events, sponsoring campaigns and making donations. All of these socially active efforts being done by Ben & Jerry’s resulted in them strengthening their reputation in the eyes of the consumers. Their social mission helped them to gain a competitive advantage by developing brand loyalty and boosting their public image.

Ben & Jerry’s environmental aspects play an important role in their success by attracting new customers through their use of the rBGH-free ingredients. rBGH is a synthetic hormone that could increase the milk production by as much as 20% when injected into cows. By doing this, they can attract new customers that are environmentally minded, thus increasing their market share. This practice helps them to protect the environment and support family farming, which will ensure them another competitive advantage over their rivals.

The competitive strategies of Ben & Jerry’s are to increase brand loyalty, become more environmentally and socially responsible, promote their high-quality super premium ice cream through its excellence and taste. The generic strategy used by Ben & Jerry’s is the focused product differentiation strategy. This strategy focuses on differentiating its products through its innovative flavors and incorporating environmental policies and programs to make their product stand alone. The focused differentiation strategy also allows for Ben & Jerry’s to charge a premium price for their super premium ice cream. Product differentiation is a costly process to Ben & Jerry’s. Therefore, they must charge a premium price to ensure profit growth. The drivers behind this strategy are to: increase market share, remain...
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