ATLANTA -- In a shift in advertising strategy for this market, Bruno's has been pushing more co-op advertising with major grocery suppliers to build greater recognition for its store banner.
The chain, based in Birmingham, Ala., is hooking up with leading manufacturers to run a full-page ad with only that company's products featured.
Bruno's last month ran an advertisement focusing on a sale of Edy's Grand ice cream products. The ad was tied in to National Ice Cream Month. Bruno's has run similar ads with at least two other companies within the last two months. One ad featured Procter & Gamble products, another helped Hershey's mark its 100th anniversary.
The new focus on full-page co-op ads emerged in the wake of Bruno's decision to change the name of its Atlanta-area Foodmax stores to Bruno's, said Houston Cook, Bruno's director of advertising. It is a tactic that has been successful here for the Atlanta division of Kroger Co., Cincinnati.
"It's a good vehicle to get your name out there and promote specific products as well," Cook told SN. "Now we can run a co-op ad with 17 stores in the Atlanta Constitution distribution. That makes it a pretty attractive opportunity for specific companies to advertise with us. They get a pretty good bang for their buck. It's been a good deal for both Bruno's and the companies we've worked with."
advertising cost was one of the reasons for converting the Foodmax stores to the Bruno's banner, Cook added.
Cook said the co-op trend will continue, "because it's a good deal, because they get 17 stores for the one ad.
"Kroger does a lot of co-op here as well, but they have 45 or 50 stores. Obviously, the more increased movement you can offer to a company on the basis of an ad, the more attractive it is for them. So when we converted everything to one name, then we could offer all those stores to them to advertise. So it means better movement for them," Cook said.
"Ice Cream for America" was the headline of the Edy's ad, which included the International Ice Cream Association's Ice Cream for America logo. Edy's Grand Ice Cream or Light and three-count packages of Edy's Grand Ice Cream Bars were sale priced at two for $3.
"The ice cream manufacturers encourage this sort of pricing, especially ice creams that contain all-natural ingredients because the ingredients are harder to come by," said a local observer. "They try to encourage stores to run ads like that by giving them special deal money to try to get the price lower so the consumer will want to buy that product."
The lower prices allow the consumer to get a gallon of premium ice cream for $5, "rather than the yucky stuff for 99 cents or $1.50."
The bill-back monies on the Edy's promotion must have been significant, the source said. "If the bill-back money is not a lot, they'll go for $2.99. If it's a great amount, it may go for two for $5 or $2.59."