Remember how a single Heston Blumenthal recipe calling for elderflower liquor will literally wipe all the elderflowers out of England? Well, upscale British grocer Waitrose has finally channeled all that bespectacled power, and put it to good use. Thanks to their Heston Blumenthal range of products this Christmas season, including hidden sauce figgy pudding and chocolate Christmas cake, which were the store’s best-sellers, Waitrose enjoyed a 4.3% spike in sales in the seven weeks leading up to Christmas, with an even more impressive 7.3% spike just in the seven days before.
“It was a record trading period but the seven days before Christmas were a complete blowout,” said managing director Mark Price.
The great irony of Heston-mas, though, came from the fact that as of very recently, everyone predicted that Blumenthal would soon be cut from Waitrose for not being a lucrative celebrity chef draw for the company. (And when people complain about Blumenthal’s boring British frozen meals not being, well, boringly British enough, there’s cause for concern.)
They also tapped into marketing goldmines like price-matching less expensive stores on basic grocery items, which like, how long till that trend crosses the pond? We love that we can buy tiny jars of Nutella at drug stores in New York. Now how can we not have to shell out $4.99 for it?
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