IPA Effectiveness Awards 2010: Gold Award - ssential Waitrose

Title: essential Waitrose

Client: Waitrose

Entrants: MCBD, Manning Gottlieb OMD

Authors: Andy Nairn, Matt Wyatt, MCBD

Contributing authors: Anders Iversen, Wanda Wilsher, BrandScience

Credited companies - Creative agency: MCBD; digital agency: Grand Union; direct marketing agency: Kitcatt Nohr Alexander Shaw; media agency: Manning Gottlieb OMD; business and marketing effectiveness consultancy: BrandScience; publishing: John Brown

Media used: Couponing/leafleting, direct marketing, magazines, newspapers, online display, outdoor/poster, PR, sales promotion, TV, website/microsite


The new own label product range 'essential Waitrose' meant Waitrose ended 2009 as the UK's fastest-growing supermarket and generated a ROMI of approximately 16.8:1.


Waitrose had been enjoying strong growth until the recession arrived in 2008: as a premium retailer, its immediate prospects looked bleak. However, through the introduction of 1,200 disparate own label products under a new brand, named "essential Waitrose", the retailer ended 2009 as the UK's fastest-growing supermarket. Range sales rose by more than 5 per cent, and soon amounted to 16 per cent of the retailer's total revenue. It is estimated the launch of this brand contributed £121 million of incremental growth in 2009 alone, pointing to an impressive ROMI of approximately 16.8:1. Waitrose successfully maintained wavering and loyalist customers, and simultaneously strengthened the parent brand's image, sales and profits.


This case is a great example of fantastically executed advertising and marketing working together. Waitrose built a brand new value positioning without adversely affecting its mother brand, a tremendous achievement that is rarely seen in the industry.

Nigel Gilbert, former group marketing director, Lloyds Banking Group.