The Economic Side of a Pringle

During the 1950s, a Procter & Gamble chemist developed a potato chip that would not crumble in the bag. Actually, there never was a bag and regulators said it was not a potato chip. It was called Pringles. Pringles History…

How Tiger Woods Helped Nike Sell Golf Balls

At $20 million a year for 30 years, a sports marketing expert said Hideki Matsuyama could “unlock $600 million in endorsements” because of yesterday’s Masters win at Augusta National. It’s all about the hats and the shirts. Let’s take a…

Learn With Elaine: A Bucatini Mystery

The product differentiation that led everyone to love bucatini also created a mystery when it disappeared from supermarket shelves.

Why Our Root Beer Needs a New Label

A&W Root Beer tells us that it’s made with Aged Vanilla: Not necessarily. Real and Artificial Vanilla Flavor Our story starts in Madagascar where 80 percent of the world’s vanilla is produced. Growing up tree trunks, vanilla is a labor-intensive…

The Mystery of the Missing Bucatini

Our story starts when a journalist named Rachel gets a call from her mom. The mother is distressed because her supermarket has stopped selling De Cecco bucatini. Even on Amazon, there is none: But it gets worse from here. A…

How to Develop a New Apple

Like iPhones and iPads, Cosmic Crisp apples were developed and tested and patented by scientists during many years of research.

The Beer Ads That Started the Corn Syrup War

During Super Bowl LIII, Bud Light’s beer ads started a corn syrup war that unfolded during the game and after but was really about product differentiation.

Solving McDonald’s Soggy French Fries Problem

McDonald’s current delivery problem with soggy French fries is somewhat similar to what it had to solve more than forty years ago.

The Unusual Ad That Sells Washing Machines

Samsung’s washing machine competition demonstrates typical oligopoly behavior through a 66 minute ad that stars red socks.

Why We Like Trix and Chips

When General Mills switched to an all natural Trix, the response was not quite what they expected. One mom said, “My kids find the color of the new Trix cereal quite depressing.” Another Trix lover complained, “It’s basically a salad now.”…