One of our favourite ‘best things since sliced bread’ posts

This week, our very own Giles Lury will be taking to the stage at Marketing Week Live ahead of the launch of his new book “Inspiring Innovation”. To get us in the mood, we’ve been revisiting some of favourite innovations old & new from our Best Thing Since Sliced Bread blog series.

There’s a new biscuit around and it’s changing the nation’s 3pm tea break. It’s the new McVitie’s Digestives Thins: the chocolate digestive’s slimmer, sexier and lower-calorie little sister.

Everybody loves a digestive. But The Grocer recently reported that biscuit sales have crumbled by £25.m in category value. Shoppers are more health-conscious and our afternoon sugar hit’s main ingredient is guilt. But in the perfect combination of new technology and savvy consumer insight, McVitie’s swooped in to save the day. Things needed shaking up, but given that 39% of people refuse to try food they haven’t eaten before (The Grocer), McVitie’s got creative with their hero digestive. The new Digestives Thins look & taste like a chocolate digestive, but contain just 31 calories per biccy.

Yes, McVitie’s is tapping into the desire for ‘permissible snacking’ as part of the current health culture, but they’ve done so with an edge. This biscuit is so exciting that even platforms like Cosmpolitan magazine are talking about it: Jess Edwards, Digital Lifestyle and Fashion editor, said, ‘I still ate three – I just felt less guilty about it.’ McVitie’s have realized that it’s not so much about consuming less calories, but rather about how much bang you get for your calorie buck. McVitie’s also addresses our snacking ‘guilt’ and changes the tone of the biscuit break. Digestives Thins are distinctively classier than a normal digestive, with their box packaging and cappuccino flavour range, meaning our biscuit break overall feels more high-end than high-calorie or high-guilt.

As deliciousness combines with permissible snacking, we can now have our biscuit and eat it. McVitie’s shows that market-shaking innovation is just as likely to be a tweak as it is to be a revolution.

Key learning: could a small innovation give a new lease of life to your hero product?

 

BY ENGINEER Tom Speed

tom.speed@thevalueengineers.com