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THE ROLE OF CO-BRANDING AND WHAT IMPORTANCE DOES IT HAVE IN THE ARTISANAL GELATO AND PASTRY SECTOR - INTERVIEW WITH MATTEO SALA, CMO CASA OPTIMA

THE ROLE OF CO-BRANDING AND WHAT IMPORTANCE DOES IT HAVE IN THE ARTISANAL GELATO AND PASTRY SECTOR

INTERVIEW WITH MATTEO SALA, CMO CASA OPTIMA

It’s not customary to talk about co-branding – a form of collaboration between companies and an effective tool to strengthen brand awareness, to expand it and to generate additional revenue in the sector of artisanal gelato.

Casa Optima has sensed the potential of co-branding inserting it in a broader group strategy, which aims to give added value to the product with an important investment in terms of communication, marking the transition from an approach focused on sell-in, to an approach that stimulates sell-out to support partner customers and to encourage sales in the ice cream parlour.

Of course, the choice could only fall on exceptional partners because it’s only by combining the expertise of leading companies that something incredibly special can be born.

Matteo Sala - CMO of Casa Optima Group talks about it extensively in this interview:

 

What is the role of co-branding and what importance does it have in the artisanal gelato and pastry sector?

To this day co-branding is still used on a small scale in the world of artisanal gelato and pastry. The b2b operators traditionally work quietly, behind the scenes, to leave space for the artisan who creates the finished product. The Group Casa Optima has taken a step forward because we are convinced that co-branding is a new frontier to be explored and developed also in this market.

Mec3 a few days ago launched a co-branding with Enervit, a leading company in the sports food supplements and functional nutrition market. Where did the idea for this collaboration come from and what targets do you intend to reach?

The idea was born by observing the cross-functional trends of the food markets and by carefully monitoring consumer trends, something that we do constantly in order to have a strategic approach towards innovation. The demand for a healthier diet, low in fat and sugars and with a high protein content, indicated the road towards the creation of the first gelato high in protein and low in sugars on the artisanal gelato market.

Consequently, the idea was born to develop the project in collaboration with the expert in protein nutrition par excellence, ‘Enervit.’ The encounter between the two market leaders and their mutual knowhow, led us to launch the gelato ‘Enervit The Protein Deal,’ which represents the new generation of a functional artisanal gelato. This allows the gelato maker not only to propose a gelato capable of combining the taste needs of a true artisanal gelato with the functional desire of a high protein product, but also to take advantage of the reputation of the brand Enervit to communicate to the consumer a clear and well-defined positioning.

 

Another interesting example is certainly the collaboration between Giuso and Strega Alberti. Again, what is your target, and what message do you want to give to your customers?

The collaboration between Giuso and Strega Alberti represents a meeting point between two historic Italian brands that make quality and continuous innovation in the wake of tradition their point of differentiation.

The liqueur Strega is often used in the preparation of confectionery products, and we have created a distinct recipe, made with real Strega liqueur: the Ricotta Stregata by Giuso.

A high-quality product designed for the most demanding gelato chefs and consumers, in search of sophisticated raw materials and a delicious recipe capable of reinventing a traditional flavour.

 

How do you support customers in the sell-out of these products?

In addition to the intrinsic distinctiveness of the product, in this approach we enhance co-marketing through the creation of a series of branded materials for the point of sale which help our customer to communicate the characteristics of the products to the consumer, facilitating their choice and therefore consumption. Besides physical materials, we also work on specific communication plans, especially digital, once again directly addressing the consumer and stimulating both awareness and demand, in order to encourage traffic in the ice cream parlours of our partner customers.

 

What kind of response are you receiving from the market?

We are receiving incredibly positive response, both for the high degree of innovation, for the quality of the projects and for the model itself, designed to support our customers in their daily business.

A unique model on the market, which characterizes our Group, marking the transition from a ‘push ‘strategy (focused on sell-in) to a ‘pull’ strategy creating demand among consumers, establishing an effective partnership with our customers, who benefit from the Group’s investments in co-marketing and communication.