Rowse Honey Brand Analysis

Rowse has been trading since 1938 and has now become the UK’s biggest honey brand. During the 1960s, after
some very wet springs and summers, the company started importing honeys from Mexico and Australia.

Rowse Honey is the UK’s Number 1 Spread brand and is well placed to benefit from the rising consumer trends
for healthier, more natural foods. As well as being completely natural, Rowse is one of the most versatile foods
around. In order to become number one spread it has over taken marmite as well as many jam/spread products.
Over the past three years, Rowse have invested heavily into research that identifies the most bee-friendly plants in
the UK.

200411_015620_RPC2010 107 Rowse Honey single

Rowse’s current advertising message is targeted at “caring modern mums,” who are motivated by giving their
children a proper nutrition and focussing on breakfast as a great start to the day. Through research it is clear
Rowse wants the tone of their products to remain/ continue to be advertised as “charming.”

Rowse also focuses on the “Save the Bee Foundation,” this is due to a phenomenon called CCD; colony collapse
disorder. CCD occurs when worker bees disappear abruptly from a hive or colony. The drop in the number of
bees is a cause for extreme concern, because without bees, flowering plants do not get pollinated, which poses
a very real threat to most of the world’s food supply. The exact cause of the trend remains unknown, although
various factors including pollution, habitat loss, pesticides, and climate change and land degradation are possible
contenders for the cause of the decline.

Rowse believes that it is important that they do their part for the environment so they “can make the world a
better place.” Rowse has made it possible for their consumers to adopt a beehive, going through either Rowse’s
Facebook page or even through their website. Rowse work in association with the BBKA on many of their educational,
research and fundraising projects. All for the love of bees and honey, of course.
Welcome to Rowse

Rowse’s SWOT:



• Over the last 60+years Rowse has become UK’s most trusted honey company.
• It has gained a reputation for fair-trading and being the leading honey brand within the UK.
• Has a wide range of products and where they are supplied (16 different countries, 45 varieties).
• Natural, tasty and versatile products.
• High quality controlled traditional products.


• Strong competition requires manufacturers to engage in heavy promotional activity, which lowers value sales and undermines profit.
• Other competitors challenging Rowse with lower priced products, some consumers look for price rather than


• Social media has opened up opportunities for the launch of interactive campaigns and the potential to create more dynamic relationships with consumers.
• Manufacturers can maximise the opportunities presented by holidays and events such as the Queen’s Jubilee or large sporting events by launching limited-edition products or packaging, which often drive up sales.



• Rowse has the threat to be undermined by cheaper supermarkets own brand products, which is cheaper.
• The falling bee population in the UK may affect supply, and subsequently the price, of honey.


Problems that Rowse will face for the future:

One of the problems Rowse would fave is that of the declining number in pollinating bees. Another is where
and how other major markets or stores are getting honeys from. The importation of honey coming from
places such as China, Australia and Africa.


Rowse’s Products

“It’s in our nature to try and please every taste, so we gather honey from 16 different countries to provide a
huge range of 45 varieties”
“Everyday Honey”
Rowse has a range of strengths rated 1-5.
1. Mild
2. Fairly Mild
3. Medium
4. Fairly Strong
5. Strong

Old vs new packaging

• The overall look of the new packaging isn’t as ‘busy’ with text as the older one, making it clean
and natural looking.
• The label on the new jar is just on the front and back rather than all the way around, making it
more possible to see the clear, natural and tasty honey inside.
• The new jar shape is hexagon, when looking above looks like honey comb affect, going back to
the ‘origins; the hives.’
• The new jar is also smooth with only the small imprint of the Rowse’s Bee on the top and
• The lid on the new jar doesn’t have “pure or honey” around it, just dots making the packing
again look tidy and neat.
• The bee is embossed into the jar structure, continuing to reflect the brands passion for honey
long after the product has been enjoyed.

Current/Recent advertising for the Brand: Rowse

Rowse’s Advertising: TV

Why did they need to advertise?

Despite strong sales value of £37m, Rowse found themselves concerned that their consumers were actually unaware
why they bought Rowse’s Honey over other competitors. So in 2012, decided to redesign the Rowse packaging
in order to reconcile the contradiction and link consumers’ love of honey with Rowse in particular.

A TV ad, for Rowse honey, viewed in April/May 2012 and Feb/March 2013, featured a boy, in a school uniform,
sitting at a table, eating porridge.
The boy then went to a kitchen cupboard and selected some honey. He squeezed the honey on to his porridge,
making a smiley face, and then started to eat it. The boy was then shown playing football in a school playground
and participating in various lessons, including a baking lesson where he squeezed honey into a cooking bowl and
tasted the honey from his finger.
The accompanying voice-over stated, “Rowse Honey is a natural source of slow release energy for busy boys and
The boy was then shown returning home, where his mother was basting a roasted chicken with honey. The mother
said, “Hi love, how was your day?” to which the boy replied, “Busy.”
The voice-over then stated, “Rowse Honey: natural fuel for busy bees.” The ad showed an image of the advertised
product and was accompanied by on-screen text which stated “Natural fuel for busy bees”
The soundtrack for the commercial is Arther Askey’s “The Busy Bee” song.
Results of advertisement:
Following the ‘makeover,’ the brand has been positioned as a high quality, natural honey, with 46% of consumers
recognizing and recalling Rowse. Consumer demand for Rowse resulted in an 11% increase in distribution in
major multiples.
On shelf stand out improved, encouraging consumers to try Rowse’s specialist honeys which led to a £25m increase
in Manuka value sales. The new brand architecture allowed Rowse to launch additional products which added
£1.7m in retail sales.

Print Advertising

The print ad  focuses on how consumers can use Rowse honey. Rowse promotes its product
as ‘Natural, tasty and versatile.’ These key words endorse the product as honey, can indeed be used for anything;
cooking, beauty and many more things, it’s a product that is full of flavour and is 100% natural; no additives or
The other print ad  focuses on the ‘Save the Bee Campaign,’ something that Rowse is deeply involved
in showing that as a brand it is socially responsible. Rowse uses a plant in the background to reinforce its personality
of being a natural product. Honey being natures natural sugar.


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