Tuesday, February 9, 2010

It Don't Mean a Thing if It Got that Fling!

I have found some new treats!! And I have also uncovered a fascinating marketing trail. We are SO doing candy CSI right now!

I spotted these a few days ago in Walgreen's:

They are good - light, crunchy. They taste like a layer of meringue with a whipped chocolate overlay all coated in milk chocolate. They are billed as "whipped-up chocolate truffle on a crisp layer enrobed in real milk chocolate." A real layer of WHAT? That's completely random. They don't really fill me up at all. If I'm gonna have chocolate, I'd rather have a regular Three Musketeers. But the crunch factor is kinda cool. You guys should try them and let me know what you think.

However, this is just a repackaging of what must have been a marketing disaster. The Fling bar:

It's tag line is "naughty, but not that naughty" and it actually has a slight pink shimmer (I kid you not). It's really had to see, but it's there.

Can you so tell this is exactly the same bar? The description here? "A delicate truffle on a subtle crisp layer enrobed in shimmering chocolate." (Still the random crisp layer.) Look at that crappy Fling lettering. That lame pink wrapper. I'm sure women were wondering - what the hell IS that? Birth control? Tampons? Packaging disaster.

And if we want to eat chocolate, we're going to eat it, dammit! Naughty? Please. This must have been thought up by a bunch of men - I can hear them now, "And let's make the chocolate shiny pink! Women like shiny pink things!" Either men or 13 year old girls. And if Mars is using 13 year old girls to design chocolate bars, then they deserve such a disaster.

The Fling was was unveiled at Candy Expo last year, and I liked it, but I haven't really seen much of it. I have to say, the repackaging is genius!! People know and love Three Musketeers, so maybe this will work. But I think women will choose the real Three Musketeers over this. It's just so much better. And so much more filling. I predict failure.

Now here's the real crime. Mars so ripped off this candy by the German company Bahlsen:

These are described as meringue biscuits (I KNEW it!)with cocoa creme filling and Swiss milk chocolate and they blow the stupid Fling/Three Musketeers Truffle Crisp out of the water. The chocolate is so much richer and creamier and it's no higher in calories (you get four of these little guys which is about the same size as two of the larger sticks). These have 160 calories, those have 170. Nice try, Mars! But I have uncovered your sneaky ways!!!

Now we're all familiar with the Milky Way bar:

I can take or leave the Milky Way. I think Snickers is so much better, that I never pick Milky Way. But it's not bad - I like the increased caramel.
But look what I found in Walgreen's:

It's ALL caramel. I like caramel, so I like this, but it is one rich bar. Holy smokes! I really felt like I needed some peanuts or something to break things up. Maybe a big glass of milk. Maybe a gallon of milk. Maybe a Holstein. Holy God. I actually think I like the regular Milky Way better.

I think this may also go the way of candy bars past. But I'd love to hear what you all think. Personally, my heart belongs to Snickers.

Okay - what have we learned?

Change your appearance and you might be able to change your life. I know - a million times I've talked about not judging a chocolate by its wrapper, but we do. Of course, if the bar really stinks, no wrapper will save it. But I can guarantee that new wrapper will sell a helluva lot more Fling bars than the old one. "Naughty, but not that naughty." Kill me.

Good ideas are everywhere. Somebody at Mars is checking out German cookies and got a new idea for a candy bar. I went to a Saints game and got a great idea for a sales meeting. Keep your eyes and ears open. Think. It's something we don't do as much as we should.

You can have too much of a good thing. Does the Milky Way really need at be ALL caramel? Reeses did the same thing with their Peanut Butter Lovers Cup. We need the chocolate - it really makes it work. That third trip to the buffet line ruins the other two. Moderation is a wise policy.

Just because you can do it, doesn't mean you should do it. Shimmery pink chocolate bars? Does Mars not realize that chocolate itself is the most beautful sight in the world? Some things just don't need any decoration.

Can I get an Amen, Church of Chocolate?


cybele said...

I found the whole Fling thing terribly odd. Even more odd now that the 3 Musketeers Truffle Crisp has turned up in stores, side by side with the Fling which is still on shelves.

Personally, I would have made it a Dove product. Still "for women" but at least a little classier.

The bar is not for me and I prefer the dark chocolate one (which doesn't exist in the 3 Musketeers version) but I think it's unique and worthy of succeeding.

I had some awesome dark chocolate covered raspberry meringues (no truffle stuff) last year and wholly support more meringue use. Good catch on the German version.

Kris, in New England said...

3 Musketeers - it's a fave. I like a little crunch in my candy bars so I may have to try the new ones.

Who am I kidding?! Of course I'm gonna try em!!!

Denise Ryan said...

Cybele - thanks so much for the comment!! Ohh - I haven't tried the dark chooclate one - was it a Fling bar?

Oh - that raspberry meringue sounds delish!!! Thanks for the info - especially cool since I cobsider you the Candy Queen of the Internet!

Denise Ryan said...

Kris - you gotta try it and please, please let me know what you think!!

Diane said...

Amen! Amen! Chocolate is such a wonderful thing.

Denise Ryan said...

Hallelujah, Diane!!