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Black Box to put products in homes

A New Zealand disruptor changing the way brands reach and engage consumers is about to launch in Australia.

More than 190,000 consumers are signed up with “in-home” marketing agency Black Box to receive free products from many of New Zealand’s manufacturers and distributors.

Campbell Arnott’s, Coca-Cola Amatil, Colgate Palmolive, Nestle, and Sanitarium Health and Wellbeing are among the FMCG giants that have already taken advantage of the service.

Consumers simply fill out a questionnaire to build up a member profile, and once registered are matched with brand campaign profiles to be chosen to receive particular boxes. The boxes are created with specific themes and categories. For instance, one box may contain chilled products, while another box may have products for parents with teenagers.

Black Box GM Loren Donaldson says the company’s free-subscription model enables it to create heavily targeted campaigns for clients – it puts the product in the hands of the right consumers.

“It is increasingly difficult for brands to engage with their target consumers,” says Donaldson. “The traditional media market is becoming more and more diluted. We cut out all the competitors and in-store clutter, and get the product directly to people in their home.”

Campaigns vary in size, the smallest run being about 5,000 boxes for such niche categories as gluten-free. The biggest runs number about 50,000 boxes.

“Trial is the ultimate path to conversion,” Donaldson says. “The average trial to conversion rate is 48 per cent. On average, nearly half the consumers who trial a product go on to repurchase.

“We also provide consumer research and insights as part of our campaign survey and post-evaluation. That’s another big thing for brand owners and marketers, who are being challenged for ROI and direct results a lot more by senior management.” Now recruiting members in Australia, Black Box hopes to reach 500,000 over the first year. It is hoped the first run of boxes will be delivered in February.

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