Consumers fall more in love with mangoes

Treena Welch, Marketing Manager, Australian Mangoes

Falling in love is a passionate affair and so it is with Australians and their mangoes. Depending on the season anywhere between 45% to 60% of Australian households will engage in the mango category. This number is largely driven by the length of the season and the volume and flow of fruit available. But what’s most interesting is who these households are, and how enamoured they are with their mangoes.

We classify mango buying households into five segments starting at the bottom of the ladder of love with the ‘flirters’ and ending with the ‘wedded’ buyers at the top. ‘Flirters’ only buy once, followed by the ‘first kiss’ buyers, who buy on 2 occasions, and then the ‘daters’, who buy 3 times in any season. As we climb to the fourth rung things get a little more serious and we meet our ‘engaged’ buyers, those who buy on average 4 to 6 times during a season. Finally we’re at the top of the ladder of love where we meet our ‘wedded’ buyers. These buyers are an extremely important and influential group.

During the 2015/16 season ‘wedded’ buyers bought mangoes on an average of 10.7 occasions, represented 18% of total mango buying households and accounted for 50% of all mangoes sold. ‘Wedded’ buyers bought the same number of mangoes as lighter buyers but spent more per mango—they’re less price sensitive. Unlike the lighter buyers, price is not their primary motivation. These buyers are motivated by the quality of their mango experience. In any season they’re the first to buy and the last to leave. They’re in love with mangoes and, as long as the trust isn’t broken, they’re married for life.

In 2014/15 the Marketing Wheel of Velocity and Momentum took hold and it gained real traction in 2015/16. The results of consumer research funded by Horticulture Innovation Australia Limited, and conducted by Nielsen Homescan, illustrate just what we’re capable of achieving when growers, wholesalers, exporters and retailers unite under a common plan, move to the beat of the crop, and collectively commit to delivering the experience consumers expect.

Over the past two seasons the Australian Mango category has achieved excellent growth at retail across the three key metrics of volume, price and value. Across the two seasons retail volume has grown by 20.3% while price has grown by 16.6%, leading to a total value growth of 40.2%. During the same period the total fruit category has grown 13.5%, meaning mangoes have had a significant, positive contribution to total fruit performance.

No two Mango seasons are ever the same and apart from the fact that the 2014 and 2015 seasons were the two biggest volume years in the history of Australian Mangoes they could not have been more different in terms of fruit flow. For retailers, the 2015 ‘mango marathon’ was significantly longer with campaigns launching at the beginning of September with big, bold mango displays still commanding front-of-store positioning well into March 2016.

Crop Forecasting gave wholesalers and retailers the visibility they needed to keep the fruit moving through the system ensuring mango displays looked fresh and vibrant. It gave retailers the information they needed to adjust their marketing plans and promotional activities. And, most importantly it gave retailers the confidence to keep big, bold mango displays at the front of the store from the beginning of the season to the very end—September through to March.

Our continued focus on fruit maturity, and the decision to pick, meant we were able to give consumers a more consistently good eating experience. Eating a mango with that juicy, sweet, unique flavour gave consumers ‘permission’ to indulge. This is what’s driving the strong increase in ‘wedded’ buyers with an additional 350,000 households moving into this segment in just two seasons.

In the end, how we launch a mango season sets the pace for the remainder of the marathon. Large, luscious displays of good quality fruit that’s well priced gives our customers permission to indulge and, if the eating experience is good, it will not only underpin the momentum we need for the entire season, but most importantly it’ll move customers up the mango ladder of love.

For more information contact Treena Welch at Australian Mangoes: marketing@mangoes.net.au or 0417 001 253