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Assignment 5: Case Colgate Max Fresh: Global Brand Roll-Out

Jennifer Mroz & Jake Pregler


1. Assess the CMF launch in the US.
In 2004, U.S. toothpaste market was evenly split between toothpastes
that emphasized therapeutic benefits and those that stressed cosmetic
benefits. CMF positioned themselves as a premier brand along with
CWE. Colgate emphasized freshness with a whitening reassurance
while using mini breath strips. According to 1st year statistical results,
media advertising contributed to 73% of that years budget. As a
company, they began strive towards their target market which
consisted of adults between of 18-34 with a female skew.
2. Were CP Chinas changes to the CMF marketing launch program
justifiable?
The changes to Chinas CMF launch were justifiable because it was
adapted to the Chinese market. The company realized that the
marketing strategy needed to be altered for the product to be success
in the Chinese market. Exhibit 9 shows the advertisement made for the
Chinese market. The company found out that the Chinese like the
thought of freshness, so they geared the advertisement to be based
around fresh confident breath. They also needed to change the name
of breath strips to cooling crystals. The name change was necessary
for the Chinese market to understand that the toothpaste is for fresh
clean breath. Exhibit 11 shows how the will advertise using a celebrity.
The company needed to change the celebrity in the advertising
campaign because people in China favor different celebrities than
people in the U.S. and Mexico.
3. Did CP Mexico manage its CMF launch better than CP China?
The CMF launch in Mexico was to neutralize the anticipated launch of
CWE, which threatened the market domination of CP. The pricing of
CMF was at par with Crests Cool Explosions. Cannibalization was not a
big issue because Crest would lose more than fair share as compared
to Colgate. Consumer appeal of CMF was strong but the consumers
suspected a corresponding lack of cavity prevention and whitening
benefits. The media advertising was based on the advertising that
combined the explosive power to freshen with extreme living.
Promotion activities included in-store merchandising, sampling and PR
to promote the core benefits. CMF is not essential to the Mexican
portfolio as the toothpaste market is growing at a slow rate. The CMF
launch in China was a whole new dimension of freshness. The Chinese
market is heavily skewered towards lower priced local brands. Their
premium market is 30%. I feel that Chinas CMF launch was better than

Mexicos because they made smart adaptations. Some launch changes


that were made include the name of the product (Max Fresh to Icy
Fresh), term changes (breath strips to cooling crystals), new flavors
and new packaging. I feel that the company gave Chinas launch more
attention and thought. They studied the Chinese market and made the
necessary changes in order for their product to be successful.
4. Evaluate the global rollout of CMF.
Our team feels that the global rollout of Colgate Max Fresh was
successful. The product was different from other brands because it had
the dissolvable breath mint strips. Their toothpaste became convenient
for customers because of the two in one product. They no longer have
to worry about using alternate breath freshening products. The only
downside was that this new product had a higher manufacturing cost.
Colgate Max Fresh was positioned as a premium brand and unique.
People want clean teeth and fresh breath and are willing to spend the
premium price. They spent a lot of time and money advertising that
their product will give you ultimate fresh breath. However, consumers
suspected a corresponding lack of cavity prevention and whitening
benefits. I dont think the Chinese market was well aware of the
effectiveness of the dissolvable breath mints. In Exhibit 3 of the case, it
shows Colgate Max Fresh concept statement. I feel that the statement
is accurate and informational. It has the power to influence customers
to recognize that it is a great product to purchase. In exhibit 5 the
different product boxes are pictured. The labels are bright, eye
catching, and promote freshness.
5. What are the costs and benefits of adaptation?
Colgate has lots of changes to make when entering the Chinese
market. The company has to be aware and knowledgeable of the
Chinese culture and their purchasing motives. This may lead to an
increase in advertising costs, if they have to alter the way they
advertise in China. The company would have to create a unique and
new advertising campaign and method. That can be very expensive. A
benefit would be that the Asian market favored freshness; therefore it
would be easy to launch the product in China. The impact of the
Chinese launch was high media costs and high costs for repackaging
(tube change, color change, etc.). A change they would need to make
would be to use a clear stand up tube rather than a carton. In Mexico
the market was towards the therapeutic market. Therefor they adapted
by focusing their advertising on oral care, protection, and relief. In
Mexico they did an advertisement promoting their toothpaste as a joy
ride for your mouth. They also offered three different flavors, which
will help bring in customers with different flavor preferences.

Adaptation can be a great way for a company to learn about a different


country/culture. It will also open up opportunities to sell one or all of
their products in that country. Adaptation also has its downside, as it
can be very expensive. Adaptation enables your company to succeed
in individual markets by developing a thorough understanding of local
requirements and modifying different aspects of your marketing
strategy. Product information on the packaging and in the
documentation also must reflect local requirements. If you are entering
markets where your product is unknown, your communications should
focus on market education. Adapting your products to local needs is
important but time-consuming.