Monday, December 6

Baking at Michaels

It's the holidays, and among other things 'tis the season for baking. I noticed some very interesting marketing activity in the baking category at a surprising place, Michaels (as in the arts and crafts store).

I actually had no idea that bakeware and cake decorating supplies were such big stuff for Michaels. It makes sense when you think about it, baking is as much arts and crafts as anything else. The dominant brand for years was Wilton, but they seem to be getting some hefty competition from some pretty big names in the kitchen and on tv.

Martha Stewart for one. She's had a huge line of art and crafts products at Michaels for quite awhile now, and she has extended her line into bakeware and decorating items. But two new entrants are heating up the space with some very interesting products, packaging, and point-of-sale materials. Paula Deen and Duff Goldman (Ace of Cakes), each have a full line of products at Michaels now as well, right across the aisle from Wilton and Martha Stewart. As I said, it's making Michaels quite the destination for the baking category.

The interesting part is that all three of these brands (Martha Stewart, Paula Deen, Ace of Cakes) are leveraging their television presence into a product line and using Michaels as exclusive distribution. Seems much more compelling than what Wilton has to offer.

Another television personality who isn't in this game -- Rachel Ray, who has her own empire of course. I'm quoted in an article about her brand, and you can read it here.

I love a little holiday competition. Now I suggest a trip to Michaels to get some cool products for your holiday baking.

What's your experience? Jim.

PS - if you don't mind, vote for my book "The Experience Effect" as one of the best new books for small business by clicking here. I appreciate it.

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