How Many Rolls?

Sometimes I wonder where some companies draw the line between product development and marketing, and who takes the lead. Obviously every consumer products companies is trying to gain shelf space and sell more product. The marketing folks have a hand in helping to guide that process, but I think the Charmin folks have gone too far.

We have a package of toilet paper that boasts 8 Giants Rolls (8 Rollos Gigantes! in smaller print). Equal to 20 Regular Rolls* (Rollos Regulares). We follow the asterisk to the back of the package where there is a “Charmin Roll Size Guide,” or what I would call a conversion chart.

1 Regular Roll (Rollo Regular) (100 sheets) = 1 Regular Roll
1 Big Roll (Rollo Grande) (200 sheets) = 2 Regular Rolls
1 Giant Roll (Rollo Gigante) (250 sheets) = 2 1/2 Regular Rolls
1 Mega Roll (no translation) (400 sheets) = 4 Regular Rolls

When my toilet paper package has a conversion chart to parse the marketing message and understand how much toilet paper I am buying, that sounds like marketing is steering the ship. Since this is a Proctor and Gamble product, that is definitely true. But they have created a package where it is virtually impossible to figure out how much toilet paper you are even buying, let alone how much it costs compared to others on the shelf, and you wind up overpaying for the Giant Rolls thinking a larger size is a better value and that’s not always true. Sometimes confusion can drive a purchase decision and sometimes it can drive the consumer away.

Jeffrey L Cohen

Jeffrey L Cohen