The Success Of Ben & Jerry's

1249 words - 5 pages

Ben & Jerry's Ice Cream was founded on the corporate concept of linked prosperity, interrelating a three-part mission statement to focus their company's growth. Their mission statement, which covers their product, economic and social goals, focuses both the leadership and the workforce on their key values. These values include staying in touch with the customer base, using quality ingredients, maintaining profitability and maintaining social awareness and accountability.Throughout the history of the company, its owners, Ben Cohen and Jerry Greenfield, have interacted with their customers, gaining knowledge on what people like and dislike about their ice cream. Opening their store in Burlington, Vermont in 1978, they immediately began interfacing with the local populace by hosting a free summer movie festival, projecting movies on the wall of their renovated gas station. In 1985, they introduced New York Super Fudge Chunk®, a flavor suggested by a writer from New York City. Throughout the years, they have continued to introduce new flavors either suggested or inspired by either regular individuals or well-known celebrities.Ben and Jerry launched their "Cowmobile", a modified mobile home used to distribute free scoops of ice cream in a unique cross-country marketing drive. Unfortunately, the vehicle burned to the ground outside Cleveland, but everyone escaped unharmed. Ben said it looked like "the world's largest baked Alaska." Undaunted they resurrected the idea the following year with "Cow II", once again going cross country giving away free scoops.That same year, at the suggestion of two "DeadHeads' from Portland Maine, Ben and Jerry introduced the first ice cream named for a rock legend, Cherry Garcia. In 1988 they introduced Chunky Monkey at the request of a college student in New Hampshire.Staying in touch with their customers would not enable Ben and Jerry to be as successful as they have become if their ice cream was not high quality as well. The second value the company espouses is to use only wholesome, natural ingredients. They began their operation on this premise, utilizing fresh Vermont milk and cream to create their frozen concoctions. During a period of volatility in the dairy market in 1991, the company went so far as to pay a dairy premium totaling a half million dollars to combat Vermont dairy farmers' losses. This helped protect the family farmers who supplied the milk for Ben and Jerry's ice cream.The combination of good product and good marketing over the years has enabled Ben and Jerry's to increase sales and maintain profitability year after year. The company has progressed from an initial investment of $12,000 to a company worth $326 million dollars when Unilever acquired it in the year 2000. Sales increased year after year, often more than 100 percent over the previous year. Constantly adding new product, resurrecting old product and successfully marketing that which consistently sells has propelled the company to...

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