Mondelez Kinh Do's Marketing Associate Director, Biscuits & Cakes Category, Mr. Simon Crowther, talks about the secrets that consistently make this long-standing brand unique.

What has made Kinh Do mooncake become one of the top mooncake brands in Vietnam today? 

The key to becoming one of the most popular brands is to have fantastic products that delight consumers every time they taste them. We have had a consistently delicious, carefully made, and beautifully presented products every year for the past 22 years. We have always taken pride in our work's quality and taste and will continue to do so.

Another critical factor is to remain relevant to our consumers by continually reviewing and updating our product range and communications. We are continuously innovating our core products while also adding new recipes, flavors, and tastes. This year alone, we launch two completely new ranges, Trang Vang Black & Gold, our premium gifting range, and Thu Lava, a modern mooncake with gooey lava filling. These are just two ways that we're bringing new trends, tastes, and experiences to Vietnamese consumers as we help them to make the most of the Mid- Autumn Festival and pass on their traditions and stories to new generations.

Kinh Do mooncake
 Mr. Simon Crowther, Mondelez Kinh Do's Marketing Associate Director, Biscuits & Cakes Category

What are you planning for your 2020 mooncake campaign?

At Kinh Do, we know that we play an important role in consumers' lives. We have been on the table during the Mid-Autumn Festival for the past 22 years. And we now have become a central part of how families celebrate the season.

In 2020 we wanted to celebrate how Vietnamese consumers celebrate Mid-Autumn, passing on their stories and traditions from one generation to the next. Kinh Do has been there throughout these generations, and therefore we launched our film and campaign "Kinh Do Mooncakes, finely crafted to keep your stories alive." We celebrate the stories that every family carries from generation to generation at this particular time of year. 

As a brand, we believe it's our purpose to enable these stories to be passed on, and we plan to continue to be a central part of the stories that are created every Mid-Autumn Festival for years to come.

What inspired designs of the 2020 range?

For 2020 we wanted to focus on the season's icon – the full moon. We put the moon at the center of our packaging designs, creating stories around the moon using other seasonal icons such as flowers, carps, and dragons. These icons are synonymous with the Mid-Autumn Festival and have stories and fables passed on through generations when told during Mid- Autumn. It celebrates not only the season and its myths but also reflects the way that just as these icons have their own stories, families themselves have stories and traditions that have passed on through the years, from generation to generation.

Kinh Do mooncake
 Mondelez Kinh Do’s latest mooncake innovation “Trang Vang Black & Gold” has unique packaging inspired by the story "Carp leaping over Dragon's Gate”

What are the recipes and innovation strategies for Kinh Do mooncake to make the products so unique?

We believe in continually delighting consumers whenever they taste our products. With this in mind, we know the joy that consumers feel when they discover a new product or taste a unique flavor or texture that they've not experienced before. We aim to deliver this to the consumer by creating the traditional mooncakes that consumers know and love fused with new exotic tastes and flavors.

 

We've been successful with this approach in the past, launching Oreo Mooncakes 2 years ago, Snow skin mooncakes, vegan mooncakes, and low sugar mooncakes. All of these products are true to the essence of mooncake, the quality of craft and production with something extra to delight the consumer when tasted.

Can you share more with us the process to bring a breakthrough mooncake concept to the market after you have surveyed the consumer need and explored their insight? 

We believe that placing the consumer at our business's heart is fundamental to ensuring that we create products that they will love. Because of this, we provide that we regularly speak to consumers throughout our development process, from product designs to new flavors and even our advertising materials. 

We have specialized teams such as Research & Development who work tirelessly to research new product innovation in texture and taste, which can be used in our mooncakes. Likewise, when we are developing our products, our marketing research team test the products with consumers to understand their preferences and opportunities to improve them. 

Finally, when we launch our range each year, our tireless sales team ensures that we place our kiosks in the right places around the country to enable consumers to purchase their mooncakes at the time and place that is right for them. The mooncake season at Kinh Do is truly a team effort, always with the consumer at the heart of our thoughts and actions.

Kinh Do mooncake
All Kinh Do mooncakes fully comply with TCVN, together with Mondelez International quality standard

What does Kinh Do see from the Mid-Autumn's sales season this year? How do the consumers receive the new concept from Kinh Do? 

We're seeing a vibrant market this year. We speak to our kiosk owners every year at the start of the season, and they're the best read of how things are going. This year they were all excited about the Kinh Do range and program for the season, and checking in with them shows that this excitement is coming through in sales performance. We expect that premium ranges such as Trang Vang Black & Gold will perform well as consumers look to make the season a little more special for themselves and their given recent events linked to COVID 19. 

We are also really confident about the quality of our product. Kinh Do mooncake's quality is affirmed for 22 years. Recently the TCVN (Vietnamese standards) for "banh nuong" (mooncakes) and "banh deo" (white mooncakes) are approved by the Ministry of Science and Technology. Kinh Do mooncakes fully comply with these new standards.

Kinh Do mooncake
Kinh Do Mooncake has been a brand of love and choice by Vietnamese consumers for Mid-Autumn Festival indulgence for the past 22 years

Can you share more in detail about the TCVN and how it means to Mondelez and consumers? 

TCVN is also used as a prefix symbol for all of Vietnam standards applied in the product, process, and service to ensure the best quality; the benefits consumers deserve to have. 

The TCVN for mooncake is the very 1st National Technical Standard, which was released just before the 2020 Mid- Autumn festival season, which is the excellent support between local food authorities and the Vietnam Standard board. These are among the globally best standards that possibility we can have. And Mondelez Kinh Do is proud that all company's products fully comply with these new standards. 

Ngoc Minh