Actually, you don’t need to be an ice cream marketer to find this news exciting. Ice cream sales are up after two years of stagnant growth, and that’s good news for everyone.
The ice cream and frozen novelty market struggled in 2009 (who said ice cream was recession proof?) and lost sales in 2010. But it rebounded in 2011, with a 4.1% increase in total U.S. retail sales to reach $10.7 billion. Even better news: sales are expected to increase another 4.1% in 2012 to become an $11.1 billion industry.
So what’s fueling the turn around? Frozen yogurt is certainly helping. The once red hot and then ice cold treat is heating up once again thanks to an uptick in healthy eating habits. A boom in the number of frozen yogurt shops is proof. The FroYo shop population nationwide grew 31 percent between fall 2010 and fall 2011 (from 3,624 shops to 4,765).
With so many new shops and so many new flavors to choose from, the only question is: one scoop or two? Oh, who are we kidding … we’ll take three and a pint to go.
MARKETING LESSON: If your category is in a slump, fear not. A comeback might be just around the corner.