Mondelēz has an impressive brand portfolio with successful product brands associated with their name such as Cadbury, Oreo and Toblerone.

When one looks at all the various product brands that Mondelēz own, it can be seen that they manage their brand portfolio successfully.

Mondelēz and their product offerings
Source: Mondelēz Website

This successful management is shown through their reputation and the perspective that their customers have of their corporate brand. These perceptions are influenced by Mondelēz’s transparency with customers, ethical practices and their attitude towards sustainability.

Although Mondelēz can be seen as a corporate giant, it becomes important to look at tips and guidelines that could be suggested in order to build and maintain their reputation further.

These elements will be explored further to illustrate how Mondelēz successfully manages their brand portfolio.

A Sizable Product Brand Collection

Mondelēz is an established corporate brand with over 50 product brands at their disposal. Their reputation is entirely dependent on the perception of their customers.

When looking through their list of product brands it becomes clear just how many of them are well-established, well-known and highly regarded by customers. This can be seen through social media platforms where customers are actively engaging with these brands.

For example, Cadbury SA – whose Facebook page has over 16 million likes – is currently doing an engaging Easter egg hunt in preparation for Easter. This helps to draw attention to their new Easter range of chocolates and in turn builds a relationship with customers through this engagement.

An advertisement for a Cadbury chocolate Easter egg hunt
Cadbury’s engaging competition
Source: Cadbury Facebook

The Power of the Consumer Perspective

News – positive and negative – spreads quickly over social media. Negative information often receives the most attention and the spread of this kind of information can be incredibly detrimental to brands who are not actively managing their online presence.

It thus becomes important for corporate brands like Mondelēz to focus on elements that will build a positive image of their brand such as remaining transparent with customers and holding themselves accountable for their actions. A focus on sustainability is important too in order to humanise a brand and build a stronger relationship with customers.

1. Transparency and Accountability

In today’s world of social media and viral content, it becomes crucial for brands to be transparent with their audience. Audiences are not shy to hold brands accountable on a public forum for any act they should deem unacceptable, which can have a devastating impact on a brand’s reputation.

Mondelēz shares behind the scenes content on their Facebook page, which helps them to remain transparent with their customers. The below post shows customers the process behind creating one of their products.

A Mondelez International Facebook post about Easter
The process behind how Milka Easter eggs are produced
Source: Mondelēz International Facebook

With so many product brands, Mondelēz needs to ensure that these brands uphold the values and beliefs that Mondelēz as a whole represents. These values can be seen on their website with their focus on elements such as sustainability and safety.

2. The Importance of Ethical Practices and Sustainability

People are becoming more conscious of their purchasing decisions and how what they buy impacts communities and the environment. Mondelēz has a section on their website dedicated to ensuring their customers that they are following best practices with sustainability and ethical practices in mind.

Here they mention the issue of cocoa, farming it sustainably and their progress in the matter. Cocoa farming is a concern for many and seeing Mondelēz’s progress in this initiative helps to boost their reputation in the eyes of their customers.

A man holding a cocoa pod
A farmer with a cocoa pod
Source: Mondelēz Website

Tips and Guidelines

Tips and guidelines are important for any brand to consider. When followed, they allow for the brand to grow and continue to uphold and build its reputation. A corporate brand like Mondelēz, no matter how successful, always has room for improvement. Even small adjustments can make a huge difference to customer perception and how the brand as a whole can be managed.

1. Speak More on the Positives

Looking at Mondelēz’s Facebook page there are a few commenters who are angry about various issues such as deforestation and unfair labour practices. Addressing these concerns in blog posts or videos could help to ease the minds of customers. Leaving these types of accusations unaddressed can lead to further speculation that could be damaging to the brand and its reputation.

It is important for a brand to proactively manage their reputation and ensure that they are spreading a positive message that helps to build a relationship with customers. Mondelēz has a lot of content on their website that they could focus on that highlights their efforts to be more sustainable such as their abovementioned cocoa efforts.

“Without cocoa there is no chocolate. Without the next generation of cocoa farmers there is no cocoa. Cocoa is a major ingredient for us. We use it in chocolates, cookies and beverages.”

Source: Mondelēz Website

2. Increase Corporate Brand Presence

Corporate brands can often be seen in the public eye as an unknown entity that people distrust due to a lack of information about them. If the gap between Mondelēz and their product brands is closed further, perhaps this will increase transparency and in turn strengthen trust between consumers and the brand itself. For example, on the Cadbury website the only clear reference to Mondelēz is their contact information in “Contact Us”. This can be jarring for a customer who is not aware of Mondelēz and their ownership.

This gap could be addressed through various means such as more information on the different product brand websites and even their social media pages where customers are engaging with them. It is important to paint Mondelēz in a light that encourages trust and the strengthening of customer relationships.

Five different flavours of Cadbury chocolates
The Mondelēz logo is on the back of the chocolate wrappers
Source: Cadbury’s Website

Final Thoughts

Looking at the above it is clear that Mondelēz manages their brand portfolio well. This is due to the issues they address, such as sustainability, and the success of their product brands, for example Cadbury’s popular new Easter range.

These elements help to show how Mondelēz’s customers shape their reputation through their interactions with and opinions of the corporate brand, which is particularly visible on social media.

Feature image: Pixabay

*Blog post created for the UCT GetSmarter Brand Management Short Course first published 15 April 2019