COYO counts on price cuts to get in the door at conventional grocers, and high quality to stay there

By Elizabeth Crawford contact

- Last updated on GMT

COYO counts on price cuts to get in the door at conventional grocers
The US team behind the coconut-based yogurt COYO hopes slashing its suggested retail price will help the brand jump from the natural to the conventional channel and that its creamy texture will keep it there by captivating mainstream shoppers who place a greater emphasis on taste.

The company plans to cut its SRP from $3.99 to $2.99 on its 5.3 ounce containers and drop the price on its 12-ounce container from $6.99 to $5.49 thanks in part to economies of scale that have been achieved through steady growth in the past two years since the brand launched in the US, Aaron Wallace, the company’s “national sales Jedi,” told FoodNavigator-USA.

“We love our independent grocers and co-ops – they are what started the whole natural food market. But we want to make COYO accessible to everyone, and that means making our price competitive so we can get on shelves in more conventional stores and get our name and brand out there to a wider variety of shoppers,”​ he added.

Quality provides staying power

Wallace recognizes that a lower price point alone will not be enough to convince mainstream shoppers who are used to paying $10 for 10 yogurts to take a leap and try a $2 premium option. That is why, he says, the company is focused on providing the same high quality product with a clean label that it always has offered.

“COYO is made with 98% coconut cream whereas others are significantly less, and we are not changing that at all,”​ he said, explaining that if a consumer shakes an unopened container of COYO and a competing plant-based yogurt the other will “slosh more”​ because it does not have the thick, creamy consistency of COYO that today’s shoppers have come to expect with the high prevalence of Greek style yogurts in the market.

Speaking from personal experience, Wallace says the mouth-feel, flavor and nutrient density of COYO will help win over mainstream shoppers. He explained that these were the factors that won him over when he first tried COYO before joining the company. At the time, he preferred dairy yogurt and actively disliked most of the coconut-based options he had tried. But COYO was a different experience that he says he instantly loved.

For this reason, Wallace says, the brand plans to heavily demo the yogurt in stores to help raise brand awareness, boost velocity and create loyal followers. It also will work with micro-influencers who shoppers trust to get the word – and coupons – out about the brand to further drive sales.

“Ultimately, we are hoping our price point reduction and our velocity in existing stores picking up … will allow us to paint a picture for buyers that they are looking for,”​ Wallace said.

To further sweeten the prospect for buyers, Wallace points out that COYO is a unique product that was out in front of the coconut trend and offers the potential for a higher basket ring. Plus, he said, with only four main ingredients, COYO offers a clean label – something many competitors do not.

Recognizing that competition is stiff in the conventional set, the brand also overhauled its packaging to make it easier to spot on shelves, Wallace said.

For example, he explained, “we put color coded labels on top, so that it draws your attention even when it is in the well, and makes it easier to differentiate the flavors.”

With all these strategies in place, Wallace says the company just needs consumers to try their product once – after that, he said, they will be hooked. 

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