For CPG manufacturers, priceless enterprise strains and information entry can come from unlikely sources.

Land O’Lakes found a useful first-party data asset in its ancillary farm tools and seed gross sales. Beam Suntory, the alcohol model, makes use of brewery vacationers for prospecting.

One other instance is the Tide’s laundromat franchise enterprise you most likely by no means knew about.

Promoting laundry detergent and opening laundromat franchise areas could not appear to be a cutting-edge advertising tactic … but it surely’s arguably extra thrilling than something taking place within the metaverse proper now.

Tide-operated laundromat and dry cleaners have been in enterprise for greater than a decade, mentioned Laura Wright, affiliate advertising director on the Procter & Gamble-owned laundry model. Wright joined the corporate 4 years in the past.

Over the previous few years, although, Tide laundromats have actually taken off, rising from zero to 60 areas between 2010 and 2019. Tide now has 189 areas with extra within the pipeline.

One issue driving the expansion of Tide laundromats is the final pattern in direction of outsourcing family duties. Meal equipment providers, residence cleaners, grocery supply and different day by day to do’s are more and more being outsourced, Wright mentioned.

Laundry is yet one more day by day “mandatory evil,” she mentioned. However “we are able to ship that point again to them – that’s the anchor of the pitch.”

There are different motivators, too.

Eight of Tide’s 189 laundromats are owned by the model, versus franchisees, and Tide makes use of them as a priceless product testbed. 4 of these eight areas are positioned close to P&G’s headquarters in Cincinnati, Ohio, the place it has its lab and growth facility for laundry merchandise.

“When we’ve got new chemical substances or new cleansing processes, we’re hand-in-hand testing and offering suggestions,” Wright mentioned. “That collaboration is a giant worth for P&G.”

There are additionally the advertising advantages. The laundromats give P&G a advertising and information edge.

In the course of the early levels of the pandemic in 2020, for instance, Tide started providing free laundry and dry cleansing providers to hospital employees and first responders (alongside a broad PR and media marketing campaign selling its goodwill). That effort was solely potential due to the franchise community.

After which there’s the info.

First-party DTC information wasn’t top-of-mind when Tide first launched its brick-and-mortar laundromats, Wright mentioned. The P&G-backed Mr. Clear model operated a line of automobile wash franchises earlier than it began opening Tide-branded laundromats. The primary goal was to function a utility for its customers.

However the information is vital now.

When Wright joined P&G in 2018, there was a dialogue about whether or not to open extra Tide-owned laundromat franchise areas or take a licensing strategy. P&G selected the previous.

Laundromats that attain a sure high quality threshold and decide to carrying Tide merchandise can promote themselves as Tide-licensed operations and show the model. Tide spends greater than practically every other model to affiliate its title with the phrase “clear,” and 1000’s of laundromat homeowners would gladly pay to piggyback on that.

“When you think about the factors of differentiation for the enterprise by way of innovation and cleansing expertise, we needed it to be extra than simply meting out the Tide title,” Wright mentioned.

Plus, there’s the app-based rewards program for regulars. (App-based loyalty program customers are basically CPG catnip proper now.)

“It’s a enjoyable time to be part of what some individuals contemplate form of an unsexy enterprise,” Wright mentioned.