June 16, 2008

This week you’ll notice a theme in my posts. Today, as you’ve no doubt noticed, the topic is Strippin’.

Drop by tomorrow for Smokin’, Wednesday for Drinkin’ and Thursday for Fightin’. Combined, this week’s posts will have a lot in common with a Sudbury Saturday night.

Today’s post isn’t about how Diablo Cody’s screenplay for Juno has caused a spike in Sunny D and Tic Tac consumption (although I bet it has); this is a post about the latest advertising trend.

If you read People Magazine, the ad in the picture above may be familiar. For those of you who haven’t seen this ad, what you’re looking at is a new way to sample food flavours. Similar to a breath freshener strip, these compact little samples melt on your tongue and are supposed to deliver a true taste of the product they advertise.

According to a press release based on info published in Advertising Age, this ad doubled the purchase intent for Welch’s 100% Juice Grape Juice. Curious to see how the sample stood up to the real thing, our test kitchen crew tasted first the strips and then the juice.

Out of six tasters, the results were unanimous that the strip taste and the product taste were very different. The strips were sweet and redolent of grapes but lacked the tang that makes grape juice so appealing and quenching. In fact, we agreed that based on the strip test alone we likely wouldn’t buy this juice.

I also noted that while several of us took a glass of juice back to our offices, no one wanted a second strip for later or to share with a friend.

Have you tried a flavour strip ad? If so, what did you think?