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  Themes Homepage > Advertising
 
Biscuits
Advertising

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During the whole of the nineteenth century, little print advertising was undertaken by the firm. The few advertisements that were displayed were black and white and appeared in well established newspapers or local directories. George Palmer preferred to rely on good reputation, quality products and decorative tins rather than invest heavily in marketing.
Infant food advert, 1841-1846
Infant food advert, 1841-1846
 
Drafts board, 1926
Drafts board, 1926
Change in Attitude
In 1901 Huntley & Palmers home trade was three times as much as that of their main rival, Peek Frean. Over the following decade Peek Frean, through their extensive advertising, increased their home trade figure so that by 1912 it matched that of Huntley & Palmers. Reluctantly Huntley & Palmers embarked upon a marketing campaign.
 
Breakfast Biscuit
The product chosen as the focus of the campaign was the Breakfast biscuit, now seventh in popularity after Petit Beurre, Fancy and Thin Lunch, Marie, Osborne and Ginger Nut and still without a rival. In the first year of the campaign sales increased by over 40% and by 1911 the firms advertising expenditure was £25,000.
Breakfast Biscuits, 1894
Breakfast Biscuits, 1894
 
Mysterious Messages
In 1906, Peek Frean sent out nearly 200,000 picture postcards to housewives up and down the country. These contained mysterious propositions which turned out to be free offers to anyone buying a packet of Assortments. Despite the concern these postcards caused for the husbands of the recipients, the campaign led to the main department stores stocking Peek Frean's biscuits to match the demand generated.
 
Peek Frean Advertisement, around 1910 Peek Frean advertisment, around 1910
Peek Frean Advertisement, around 1910 Peek Frean advertisment, around 1910
Radio Advertising
By the 1930s Huntley & Palmers were using all types of media to promote their products. At a time when over half the population with radio sets listened regularly to the pirate stations Radio Luxembourg and Radio Normandie, Huntley & Palmers felt constrained to buy time on both channels. During these shows an ailment named 'Afternoon Fatigue' was invented to which the remedy was 'Have you had your Osbornes?' It is not known how far this expensive form of promotion helped sales.
 
 
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  Themes Homepage > Advertising
 
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