comfort intense

Sales: £180.2m (+6.8%)

Here’s one brand that’s flying high. Comfort’s value at the tills has grown by £11.4m despite a 2.1% drop in units sold. It’s sailed 10 spots up the ranking. How?

By “challenging category norms and providing consumers with intense freshness at all stages of the laundry process, from wash to wear, without compromising on softness,” according to senior brand manager Fernanda Tubini-Roberts.

That means a combination of value-added innovation and hefty marketing support. Last March, Unilever launched super-concentrated conditioner Comfort Intense, a range that’s racked up £21m so far and been a key driver of the brand’s overall 9.1% rise in average price. The launch was backed by a £5m marketing campaign including TV ads that focused on the product’s super-concentrated formula and unique 15ml dose, compared with the standard UK fabric conditioner dosage of 35ml. Unilever is now expanding the range and has just launched Comfort Pure Ultra Concentrate, using the same 15ml dose and targeting consumers with sensitive skin, backed by a £1m ad campaign.

Sales of the standard Comfort product totalled £60m while the Comfort Creations range - marketed on its exotic fragrances, including Honeysuckle & Sandalwood and Indian Rose & Musk - generated sales of £48.7m. Still, for a new product to have generated more than 10% of the brand’s total sales in under a year on shelf is no mean feat. It was also voted laundry product of the year in the 2016 Product Innovation Awards.

Intense indeed!