Types of product claims
Using the wide choices of available ingredients, today’s products carry a variety of claims:
- Product positioning claim: these claims can be made without conducting any research. Examples: natural, holistic, carnivore, wild.
- Health claim: is typically made on the basis of a nutrient, ingredient, or a combination that have been shown to improve health in some way. Examples: dental, mobility, digestive, immune.
- Palatability claim: often based on comparisons to a currently marketed product, ‘improved palitability’ perhaps is the most frequent product claim made using research findings. Examples: taste, human sensory appeal such as ‘chicken’ and ‘roast beef’.
- Product form/functionality claim: product form/functionality claims are those based on changes to the physical properties of the product form. Examples: low bulk density and soft texture.
- Consumer aesthetics claim: this is important to deliver on expected brand equity promises. Examples: desirable aromas, comfort packaging.
The process of obtaining product claims
Once the need for a product claim has been determined, there are two primary goals needed to achieve in-market product claims.
First: Define the amount of resources needed for the project.
Second: Identify a project sponsor.
Defining the project resources needed early in the process can eliminate headaches later on when one attempts to go to market. Numerous websites provide overviews as well as in depth information about the project management process.
Part of the new product claims development process is to set up proper study design. For clinical studies, items such as whether to blind the owners to treatments, whether to block on items such as weight or age, the number of animals needed in each treatment and so forth is important. To determine the number of animals needed for each treatment a power analysis should be conducted.
Blocking on factors common to all treatment groups can lessen variation between treatments and improve the ability to detect treatment differences. Blinding owners/subjects as well as the researchers can eliminate bias when subjective assessments are performed.
Sustainable product claims
Once in-market, product claims can become quite valuable for a company in the positioning of a product or product line. Unfortunately, by the time a product claim has been made, the opportunity to make a sustainable in-market claim has often been lost. As such, proactively approaching the issue of creating sustainable product claims is important in achieving long-term in-market success.
To achieve sustainable product claims, the manufacturer has several possible options. The first option involves strategic sourcing of ingredients. If a manufacturer can obtain a unique supply arrangement either based on exclusivity or volume pricing, this can provide a competitive advantage.
A second possible approach to sustainable product claims is to obtain a patent position, which enables the manufacturer to exclude others from practicing the product claim. Another advantage of a patent position is that it allows the manufacturer a stronger negotiating position. This has proven to be one of the most effective and widely used approaches by finished product manufacturers. The challenge with obtaining a patent position is that it requires considerable investment in research and patent resources before practicing the product claim.
A third option available is to create a product of which only the manufacturer can meet certain regulatory constraints. Opportunities are growing for manufacturers in the regulatory area due to the continued proliferation of regulations and enforcement of existing regulations.
A fourth possible area to obtain a sustainable product claim exists when a manufacturer discovers a way to process a product that is not known to others resulting in a unique product form. An example of this is creating a lower bulk density product than can be achieved with competitors’ processes.
The latest articles
Supertails raises $15 million in Series B funding
The Indian start-up wants to gain more customers and enhance its offline business strategy.
Lyka Pet Food expands manufacturing capabilities to Victoria
The Australian pet food manufacturer aims to improve its logistics strategy.
From Symrise to Pets at Home: a new round of appointments in the pet industry
As many as 8 pet players have recently appointed top-level executives to their management teams. GlobalPETS takes a look.
Weekly newsletter to stay up-to-date
Discover what’s happening in the pet industry. Get the must-read stories and insights in your inbox.