Milk brands need genuine brand differentiation to survive

milk brand proposition

Time for Lion Group to step up. It’s milk brands, including PURA and Dairy Farmers are suffering from no real brand differentiation and now they are fighting a legal as well as marketing battle.

For decades, full cream milk has been just been milk. The only real effort to create premium milk brands was around low-fat or other product extensions. This is all changed when The A2 Milk Company launched a premium product that re-framed the category with milk from different cows that produce only the A2 protein.

Despite selling for $2.35 per litre, A2 milk’s brand proposition has resonated and helped the company claim almost 10 per cent of the market. Now, Lion’s brands are being squeezed between A2 at the top end of the market and cheap $1 litre private label milk at the bottom end, and they’ve lost considerable market share.

Lion needed to protect their brands but instead of creating a compelling and authentic brand proposition they took a defensive approach that seems to have been designed to confuse the market.

Milk brand claims

A2 is now suing Lion Group for misleading and deceptive conduct by stating ‘naturally contains A2 protein’ on their PURA and Dairy Farmers milk labels.

Regardless of the outcome of this case, Lion should be working on developing a unique proposition for their milk brands.

There is a massive opportunity for these brands to do the right thing and be rewarded by Aussies who are keen to do their bit to help farmers. While they can’t solve the global oversupply, the brands could provide an authentic brand solution that heroes and provides real support for local dairy farmers.

While we’re talking milk, I also think there is room for another player who can truly shake up the market by changing the way milk is produced – but more on that soon!

Michael Hughes

Michael is Managing Partner and Strategy Director at Truly Deeply, a top branding company with 25 years of experience working with brands to position them for growth. His deep expertise is in unlocking the strategic power of your brand to create a differentiated, compelling and authentic brand proposition that will engage all your audiences. Michael has extensive experience working across Australia and the Middle East working with leading Australian and International organisations across just about every sector.

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