Usually it's the Super Bowl where marketers unveil edgy ads for everything from cars to websites. But this Sunday during the Academy Awards, Procter & Gamble is introducing commercials for Tide Pods, its one-step laundry solution. Using the tagline, "Pop in. Stand out," Tide is promising a "whole new kind of clean." But that clean is going to cost you—four more cents a load.
Originally planned for the fall, the launch of Tide Pods was delayed because Procter & Gamble said it needed more time to ramp up for the strong market demand it anticipated. In the meantime, competitors were developing similar products. The three-chamber Tide Pods are similar to water-soluble pacs for dishwashers, which have been embraced by consumers. And while we've yet to compare the Tide Pods to other laundry detergents, Cascade's Complete All-in-1 Action Pac is one of our recommended dishwasher detergents.
Tide is betting its $150 million marketing budget that its customers are willing to pay for convenience. One advantage of the pods is that they may solve the problem of overdosing in which consumers add too much detergent to a load of wash. As we recently wrote in Confusing caps, bottle caps of varying sizes can cause consumers to add too much laundry liquid to the load. And that'll cost you too.
—Mary H.J. Farrell