Danette’s indulgence play

How Danone's latest arrival is poised to address an unmet need from the brand's yogurt lineup.

Danone is shaking up the yogurt category with the rollout of its first dairy dessert, Danette, in Canada earlier this week, a product it hopes will address a specific consumer need that its current offering does not.

Consisting of 75% milk, Danette boasts both a nutritional and an indulgent side, with flavours such as choco-coconut and caramel, positioning itself as a new way to eat dairy products.

In a study, Danone examined need states around people’s eating and drinking habits, such as hunger and needing an energy boost, and found its offering came up short when considering the indulgence need, says Pauline Varga, VP marketing, Danone Canada.

Moreover, Varga points to research indicating two-thirds of Canadians want a treat after their meal, with 80% turning to sweet items like cake, ice cream, cookies and chocolate. Aiming to offer a healthier alternative, Danette targets average families and consumers who don’t reach their recommended two to four daily servings of dairy, which represents two-thirds of Canadians, she adds.

The launch is supported by an in-store and mass media program, with agency partners Saint-Jacques Vallée Y&R, as well as BCP on in-store communication and Enzyme Food and Health for PR. Varga points to the importance of getting customers to try the product, with demos at major retailers such as Loblaws, Walmart, Sobeys and Metro. Coupons will be available on the packaging of its Activia line and on the brand’s website.

While in-store efforts have started to roll out, the mass media campaign will hit market next month, comprising TV, online video, traditional web advertising and social.

Beyond discovering the product, the main messaging plays up Danette’s family positioning, namely, “This is the brand that helps you gather your family at the end of your dinner,” says Varga.

This theme also resonates with the logo – where the two Ts in Danette are people, seemingly holding hands.

Danette has been available in other countries for decades, but in Canada, the priority had been to establish the yogurt category, with launches such as Activia in 2004 and DanActive in 2009, says Varga. Now was the right time to introduce a new kind of product and respond to that need state of indulgence, she says, but adds this won’t stop Danone from innovating on the more traditional yogurt side.