Sunday, December 20, 2015

Misleading the way to sales

As first pointed out on this blog 18 months ago, General Mills is playing some games with consumers when it comes to its relatively new Cheerios Protein cereal. While not really lying, they nonetheless manipulated the serving sizes on the cereal compared to regular Cheerios to make it look like the Protein variety has substantially more protein, when in fact the difference is minor.

Others have noticed as well, including the Center for Science in the Public Interest (CSPI), who recently launched a class action lawsuit against General Mills alleging false marketing. They point out the protein discrepancy, and reveal that Cheerios Protein also has more sugar.

The sad part in all of this is that in an effort to gain market share companies can sometimes resort to trickery to fool consumers (the recent Volkswagen debacle is another great example). General Mills and other cereal companies need to focus on true innovation if they want to increase (or at least hold on to) sales. They can do it, but these kind of shenanigans are not the way to go.

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