Bull Brand, one of SA’s most iconic food brands, has launched a new bold ‘Inner Strength’ brand repositioning aimed at leveraging the heritage of the brand while finding new relevance for a broader audience.
Bull Brand has held a special place in South African hearts and homes since 1957.
The older among its fans will remember the ‘bu bu bu Bull Brand’ TV adverts, which captured the nation’s imagination as young boys (dubbed in men’s voices) sang about the product’s meaty virtues. The message was clear: Bull Brand is all about making you big and strong. It is a celebration of masculinity and physical strength.
Over sixty years on and this iconic brand still occupies the number one spot as the market leader in the Canned Meats and Meals Category. But as with all legacy brands, the time has come for Bull Brand to evolve with its consumers.
Merlin Norman, Marketing Manager for Rhodes Food Group explains: “We needed to make Bull Brand more relevant while building a stronger emotional connection to the brand for our younger consumers.”
“For decades, Bull Brand’s marketing position has always been about physical strength, but Inner strength is more than muscles. It’s a spirit, it’s an attitude, it’s character and it’s soul,” Norman says. The brand has always aimed to make people feel strong inside, but we want to shift consumer perceptions of Bull Brand as a physical-strength brand to an inner-strength brand by redefining what ‘strong’ really is, it’s a subtle but very significant change.”
“The brand continues to resonate with a younger market as we have seen with the Sunday Times Gen Next survey’s over the past two years, where Bull Brand appears as one of the coolest brands,” she explains. “It is with this in mind that we looked at reframing what the brand stands for in order to remain relevant for generations to come but at the same time ensuring we still remind our audience of the same emotions that they have felt for the brand in past years.”
Rhodes Food Group has already started the roll out of this new brand positioning, which will overlap with the launch of an exciting above-the-line campaign in March.
“The new campaign will be an extension of the overall Bull Brand marketing strategy, which not only talks to the satisfying fullness that comes with a real meaty taste in your tummy but also the quiet power of self-confidence,” Norman elaborates. “The campaign is a celebration of the inner strength of all South Africans and aims to demonstrate that when you feel strong inside, nothing can stop you.”
“In the visual depictions of the campaign, we have used strong iconic imagery to dramatise the attitude of people who are fearlessly unfazed in the face of challenge – living bold and brave because they are packed with strength of character,” she says. “This type of campaign is a first for the brand and we are very excited to define inner strength for South Africans whether they are young or old!”