Quilted Northern(R) Ultra Plush 2009 Top Non-Food Product Launch

Mar 25, 2010, 10:00 ET from Georgia-Pacific LLC

ATLANTA, March 25 /PRNewswire/ -- Quilted Northern Ultra Plush has been named the top non-food consumer packaged goods (CPG) launch of 2009 by Information Resources, Inc. (IRI), according to their New Product Pacesetters report released on Monday.

The Quilted Northern Ultra Plush launch introduced the first three-ply ultra premium bath tissue with Plush-Quilts™ available nationwide, according to Andrew Towle, vice president and general manager of Georgia-Pacific's consumer tissue category.

"It started with a deep understanding of the consumer and what she wanted from premium bath tissue," said Towle.  "That was followed by an unprecedented commitment to making absolutely our best, most consumer preferred product possible."

For 15 consecutive years, the annual IRI New Product Pacesetters report has showcased each year's most successful new CPG brands.  These brands truly beat the odds: less than one-quarter of new brands exceed the $7.5 million hurdle for year-one sales that is required to earn Pacesetter status.  With a record number of new products introduced, competition for consumer attention and spending has become even more intense during the past few years, particularly in the current economic climate.

"There were a lot of skeptics, both inside the company and out, that questioned if it was the right time to launch this ultra premium product," Towle admits.  "But this recognition from IRI is proof that we truly knew our consumer and her desire for affordable luxury."

"With $135 million in year one sales (in food, drug and mass outlets, excluding Walmart), Georgia-Pacific is definitely meeting the needs of today's smart and savvy shoppers with Quilted Northern Ultra Plush bath tissue," said Thom Blischok, president -- IRI Global Innovation and Strategy. "Launching new products is never easy. Georgia-Pacific is a shining example of how to effectively leverage innovation by offering a mainstream three-ply bath tissue in the U.S."

"The marketing strategy was a key component to the launch success," explained Patrick Davis, senior director -- marketing, Quilted Northern. "Research indicated that 'plush' resonated well with consumers which inspired a campaign that made everything plush.  The challenge was to demonstrate 'plush' in a manner reserved enough that consumers would connect with an everyday product like bath tissue."  

Elements that contributed to the highly successful launch:

  • Advertising tagline -- "Luxury you can see and feel" -- The fully integrated marketing campaign focused on the fact that Quilted Northern Ultra Plush gives women a luxurious experience that they can see (the three layers) and feel (the softness).
  • Supporting pieces of the campaign focused on plush / softness and communicated these attributes whether in store, through media or online. The brand hosted an online sweepstakes where the audience could win the plush items they saw through the creative materials. 
  • The program featured a money back guarantee, ensuring consumers that they would be happy with product or they would receive their money back.   

"From being one of first bath tissue brands to be 'splinter free' in the early 1900s to offering a luxurious experience from three layers consumers can see and feel, Quilted Northern has certainly come a long way in its 100-year history," concludes Davis.  

About Georgia-Pacific

Headquartered at Atlanta, Georgia-Pacific is one of the world's leading manufacturers and marketers of building products, tissue, packaging, paper, cellulose and related chemicals. The company employs more than 40,000 people at approximately 300 locations in North America, South America and Europe. Georgia-Pacific creates long-term value by using resources efficiently to provide innovative products and solutions that meet the needs of customers and society, while operating in a manner that is environmentally and socially responsible and economically sound. The familiar consumer tissue brands of Georgia-Pacific Consumer Products LP include Quilted Northern®, Angel Soft®, Brawny®, Sparkle®, Mardi Gras® and Vanity Fair®.  Dixie Consumer Products LLC, a Georgia-Pacific company, manufactures the Dixie® brand of tabletop products.  For more information, visit www.gp.com.

About the Report

The IRI Times & Trends Report, "2008 New Product Pacesetters: The Role of Innovation in a Down Economy" is available from IRI, the leading global provider of consumer, shopper, and retail market intelligence and insights for the consumer packaged goods (CPG), retail, and healthcare industries. The findings of this report were compiled based on IRI New Product Profiler™, IRI Consumer Network™ and IRI InfoScan™ Reviews. To download the report, visit http://us.infores.com/page/news/times_and_trends.

About Information Resources, Inc.

IRI is the world's leading provider of consumer, shopper, and retail market intelligence and insights supporting 95 percent of the FORTUNE Global 500 consumer packaged goods (CPG), retail and healthcare companies. Only IRI offers the unique combination of integrated market information, automated and predictive analytics, innovative enabling technologies, and domain expertise.  With IRI, leading retailers and manufacturers are able to quickly discover breakthrough insights driving smarter decisions and actions across the enterprise for breakthrough results. Companies around the world depend on IRI for improved productivity, stronger brands, and dramatic revenue growth. For more information, visit http://us.infores.com.

SOURCE Georgia-Pacific LLC