Dutch supermarket chain Jumbo is revising its main marketing ploy, the ‘Seven Certainties’. Certain hard promises, such as the lowest price or free shopping for the fourth in the queue at the tills, are dropped.
Managing changed expectations
Jumbo founder Karel van Eerd created the Seven Certainties (“7 Zekerheden”) in 1996, in order to make his chain stand out more in a very competitive market. 27 years later however, these promises can do with a little update as customer expectations have changed over time. Jumbo is now doing exactly that, in order to stay relevant for customers.
Some of the certainties have become either obsolete (such as the promise to keep check-out waiting times low, made redundant by the growing use of self-service check-outs) or just too basic to mention explicitly (such as the fourth Certainty guaranteeing fresh products). Spokesperson Ronald van der Aart told Distrifood about the latter that it is simply a thing that customers nowadays expect by default.
Possibly the most striking change is the termination of the lowest price guarantee (which never has been valid in Jumbo’s Belgian stores anyway). The chain says that people do not ask for it any more, due to the complex conditions attached to the guarantee. Moreover, private labels have grown exponentially since 1996, and they cannot be compared anyway. Despite all this, Jumbo holds on to the promise that “customers are cheaper off anyway”, saying that the chain will maintain three major focuses: price, product range and service.