wanted something) more colorful, light-hearted. People are not
so serious when they come into contact with pods.”
To get a look at some of the commercials for Tide Pods, which
were created by Saatchi and Saatchi, visit WWW.HAPPI.COM.
Innovations at the BRIC
At the BRIC, P&G works with retail partners and non-compet-itors to get a better understanding of how and why people buy.
The site houses a typical, upper middle income home where
P&G invites thousands of consumers in each year to see how
they wash clothes, clean counters and perform a variety of household tasks. The BRIC also includes 3D technology that enables
retailers to see how P&G products will look on their store shelves
as well as a full-size grocery store to demonstrate just how P&G
products stack up to competitors’ brands on-shelf.
reduce costs by $10 billion by the end of fiscal 2016. But to get
there, P&G will shed 5,700 non-manufacturing jobs—10% of its
non-manufacturing workforce—by the end of fiscal 2013, which
begins in July. P&G’s total workforce is about 129,000. At a recent
Consumer Analyst Group of New York (CAGNY) conference,
company executives explained P&G will save $800 million from
the job cuts. The company also expects to save $1 billion in marketing costs and $3 billion in overhead costs. To achieve those
goals, P&G will implement a range of cost-cutting initiatives,
including using less-expensive packaging, eliminating duplicate
work, working on innovations with outside companies and virtual technology, and advertising for a variety of brands at once.
Analysts applauded the move, pointing out that P&G lags
competitors when it comes to operating efficiency. The company
spends about 31.5% of its revenue on selling, general and ad-
P&G’s BRIC has all the comforts, and then some, of home.
The Beckett Ridge Innovation Center pays homage
to P&G’s soap-and-candle roots.
Overall, P&G spends $500 million a year on consumer research and $2 billion a year on research and development.
Company executives maintain that total is about 60% more than
the next closest competitor and more than most competitors
combined. With that kind of budget behind it, P&G has claimed
132 SymphonyIRI Group Pacesetter awards during the past 16
years, which is 16 more than the combined total of P&G’s top six
competitors during the same period.
While awards are nice and more than 40,000 patents are even
better, the real purpose of this R&D might is understanding just
how the consumer interacts with P&G products.
For example, Keith recalled that one focus group member explained she couldn’t hold her infant son and do the laundry at the
same time using a conventional laundry detergent that required
measuring and pouring. The new product form freed her up to
hold her son and toss in a Tide Pod at the same time.
“We’ve surprised and delighted consumers and revolutionized the laundry process,”insisted Keith.
Deep Cuts Ahead
Now, if P&G can just find a way to surprise and delight its in-
vestors, too. Last month, the company unveiled a plan that will
ministrative expenses, compared with 28.1% for other household
product companies. But the changes won’t be cheap. During the
next four years, P&G will record $3.5 billion in restructuring costs.