Kraft Foods Canada Targeting the Millennials Case Study

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Problem Definition

Until now, Kraft has rested its marketing strategy for its processed cheese slices on the traditional demographic of Canadian families. As the millennial market grew, the need to reposition Kraft singles became immediately apparent. Moreover, the market for processed cheese itself had been falling and millennials tended towards products that reflected wellness and healthy food—the antithesis of what processed cheese offers. Kraft therefore finds itself in a position of needing to rebrand one of its most iconic products, making Kraft Singles relevant to millennial moms—and their children.

Kraft Singles promotes four core brand attributes overall: health, nutrition, taste, and convenience (p. 7). To retain authenticity, Kraft Singles needs to develop a new marketing campaign that is both relevant to millennial moms while also remaining rooted in these four core attributes or values. Because of the connotation of processed cheese as being less healthy than real cheese, Kraft Singles cannot necessarily position itself as a natural living product, nor one that offers any significant nutritional value. However, Kraft Singles can capitalize on the two other attributes of taste and convenience.

Ethics—both environmental and animal ethics—are also challenges. Kraft Singles needs to overcome the problems inherent in purporting to be socially conscious while selling a product that depends on factory farm dairies and plastic-wrapped processed cheese. To overcome these challenges, the Kraft Singles division has several options with the following alternatives.


There are several alternatives the company can take in the overall strategy of repositioning Kraft Singles. One is to target emotions like sentimentality, linking Kraft Singles to the comforts of home, to moms and grandmothers and the continuity of female nurturing within Canadian families. This approach would continue to position the processed cheese slices as being emblematic of Canadian family and home life, while also appealing to the renewed sensibilities and interests of millennial moms. By emphasizing family cohesion and family values, this approach also helps Kraft Singles avoid alienating its core consumer group consisting of traditional Canadian families.

Another strategy would be to appeal to the value system of millennial moms. Millennial moms value brands with “good social ethics” (p. 3). Therefore, Kraft needs to interject social responsibility, ethics, and health into the rebranding of Kraft Singles. This will be a tremendous challenge for a brand that is characterized by being wrapped in individual plastic sheets, and which relies on factory farming for its dairy production. Without being deceptive, Kraft Singles needs to single out elements of their business model that are in fact socially conscious—which may require the cooperation of the rest of the marketing team. For example, the company may need to partner with at least one ethical dairy and feature that dairy in commercials or in social media.

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The company might also want to consider a new method of packaging Kraft Singles that eschews the individually wrapped portions and instead touts the ecologically minded bulk packaging millennial moms might resonate with. Appealing to “good social ethics” could also require the company to participate in high profile philanthropic campaigns, or donating a portion of all Kraft Singles sales to a charitable cause.

Millennial moms appreciate convenience—not just in their products but also in the use of digital media to enhance their overall lifestyle. Social media use among millennial moms is relatively high, with consumers seeking instant information about products. Millennial moms want, for example, “real time access to recipes and meal solutions,” (p. 4). Therefore, the marketing strategy should be consistent across all social media platforms, using social media to actively engage consumers and encourage bilateral communications. Millennials “want to connect with brands completely,” (p. 4). A social media campaign would encourage users to share their own recipes using Kraft Singles, and include social media contests for the best images or recipes.

The value-conscious tendency of millennial moms, while not necessarily different from their predecessors, is also an important alternative marketing strategy Kraft can take. Value is different from pricing, and Kraft Singles does need to recognize that millennial moms may be more willing to pay for products that offer value-added propositions such as socially conscious behaviors or healthy eating choices. Millennials eat out often, but they also “eat smarter,” and are less brand conscious than their parents’ generation (p. 3). If possible, product development at Kraft should focus on a “craft Kraft Singles,” whereby the processed cheese is discussed not in terms of the convenience it offers but in terms of the craftsmanship it represents.

Finally, using a celebrity chef as a spokesperson for the product might help, possibly by showing the unique properties of processed cheese for melting. Processed cheese needs to be positioned as something totally different from artisinal cheese—not as a competitor but as an indispensible ingredient in homemade grilled cheese sandwiches or handmade burgers. Creative approaches like “cheese ambassadors” that offer product demos and wine pairings in the store would be an integral solution using this alternative strategy, which can also be combined with a robust digital marketing campaign (p. 8).


The criteria for evaluating the marketing strategy should depend on focus groups—the reactions of participants from the target demographics. Similarly, anonymous….....

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