CLOSE-UP: CLIENT OF THE WEEK - Ben & Jerry’s focuses on fun. Helen Jones used a jokey style to show the brand’s quirkiness. By Jim Davies

’Eating ice-cream is all about having fun,’ Helen Jones, general manager, UK sales and marketing for Ben & Jerry’s, says. ’We want to provide an antidote to the seriousness of our rivals.’ We know who Jones is alluding to, although she points out that the luxury ice-cream market has become increasingly competitive since a flood of own-label products arrived on supermarket shelves during the past couple of years.

’Eating ice-cream is all about having fun,’ Helen Jones, general

manager, UK sales and marketing for Ben & Jerry’s, says. ’We want to

provide an antidote to the seriousness of our rivals.’ We know who Jones

is alluding to, although she points out that the luxury ice-cream market

has become increasingly competitive since a flood of own-label products

arrived on supermarket shelves during the past couple of years.



With tongue-in-cheek flavour names like Chunky Monkey and Cherry Garcia

- and a company ’social policy’ which ploughs back 7.5 per cent of

pre-tax profits into its local community in Vermont - Ben & Jerry’s has

never exactly run with the crowd.



Quirky humour takes centre stage in the new print campaign through

Renegade for the right-on ice-cream. Apart from a ’short but sweet’

radio campaign which ran last year, it’s the first substantial

above-the-line push for Ben & Jerry’s, which has been available in this

country for four years and has attracted a growing following among

ice-cream lovers.



’It’s a rich brand with great values,’ Jones confirms. ’Renegade hit the

nail on the head. The campaign (which features cartoon versions of the

hippie founders, Ben Cohen and Jerry Greenfield) is simple and has

impact.’ Animated cinema commercials may follow.



Jones joined the company three-and-a-half years ago from the IDV-owned

Callitheke, where she developed a range of drinks brands, including Aqua

Libra. ’They are very different companies,’ she admits, ’although they

are both involved in the premium-branded business.’ Jones’s career began

in sales, progressed through business development and trade marketing to

the broader role she enjoys today. She heads a four-strong UK operation

based in Hemel Hempstead, although she held the fort alone for her first

six months in the role.



’My husband says I’m obsessed with the job,’ Jones, a mother of three,

explains. ’You have to be - we’re up against big-spending brands and

have to make ourselves heard.’



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