Following the sensational decision to redesign Mr Kipling – again – is it fair to link the brand’s falling sales to its brand packaging?Yes. Packaging asks people to think about a product in a certain kind of way and our design successfully communicated a new market positioning that promised

extraordinary quality. But packaging does not work alone – the price should be appropriate and the product has to fulfil the promise too. Packaging and sales are clearly connected, but marketing is like a jigsaw puzzle – all the pieces have to fit.

Bruce Duckworth (pictured), Founder, Turner Duckworth

In a nutshell, the packaging redesign could be to blame for falling sales. However, it could also be down to the advertising campaign, price marks, more competitive own-brand packaging or to Dr Gillian McKeith reminding us that cakes are bad for our health. This is not a case for apportioning blame to Turner Duckworth, or indeed the RHM marketing team. This brave attempt to deliver brand difference, in a relatively predictable and stable market, has taught us all that it’s better to try and fail, than to not bother trying at all.

Spencer Buck, Creative Director, Taxi Studio I loved the Turner Duckworth design, but, as I pointed out in February’s Review, I don’t eat much cake. As DW reported (DW 10 November), it ‘alienated core customers by steering away from the brand’s widely perceived “plastic cake” heritage’. It’s clear that the brief or its interpretation was wrong – it should have read, ‘Let them eat plastic’.

Steve Osborne, Founder, Osborne Pike Limited

No, a fall in sales is probably about the actual cakes, rather than the branding. Today’s health-conscious gym bunnies are never more aware of the old adage, ‘a moment on the lips – a lifetime on the hips’. Whenever I am in a lunchtime queue, most of the women are reading the back of the pack to see how much fat and sugar they are about to put away. As much as I loved the redesign, I can imagine it was maybe a bit too contemporary for the brand’s older, more loyal consumers. Having said that, category-challenging design does need time to sink in and brave clients to stand by it.

Simon Adamson (pictured), Design Director, Coley Porter Bell

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