Due to the fall in the pound, Unilever asked Tesco to raise prices and pass on the additional cost to consumers. Tesco refused and the very public fallout led to a temporary suspension of Unilever products (e.g. Marmite) stocked within Tesco scores. As the fallout made headlines, both companies tried to present themselves in the best light. Even other supermarkets took advantage as shown by this Asda ad….
But in the end, Unilever had the last laugh. Sales of Marmite increased by 61% during the week of the row. That’s an extra £335,000 worth of jars. Why? Because Marmite suddenly became top of mind for consumers and scarcity – we buy more of a product if it’s available for a limited period or there are few available.