Have a Lidl class: Discounter goes after foodie shoppers

Lidl opens a new front in the supermarket wars with a £20m advertising campaign to lure middle class consumers from the beleaguered Big Four.

by Adam Gale
Last Updated: 29 Sep 2014

Not content with siphoning budget-conscious customers from the Big Four supermarkets, German discounter Lidl is now planning to pilfer their middle class shoppers too. The company has taken a step out of its ‘traditional’ market today, launching a £20m advertising campaign targeting the bourgeois set.
 
The adverts, from London firm TBWA, show shoppers trying products at an ever-so-cool east London market, then getting a Lidl surprise when they find out where the goods are from.
 
This comes as the latest Kantar supermarket sales figures show the continued dramatic rise of Lidl and its rival Aldi, which saw sales increase by 18.3% and 29.5% respectively for the 12 weeks to August 18th, compared to the same period last year. Between them the two firms now have 8.4% of the UK grocery market, up from 6.8% a year ago.
 
The growth of the discounters into the cheaper end of the market has come at the expense of the Big Four, but particularly Tesco. In fact, over this period, Asda, Sainsbury’s and Morrisons have between them maintained sales compared to last year, while Tesco’s have fallen 4%.
 
Morrisons’ sales slide, which had been on a similar scale, has halved from 3.8% in the 12 weeks to July 20th to 1.9% in the 12 weeks to August 18th, in a sign that its efforts to turn things around might be working (for now).
 
Lidl has been trying to shed its image as a no-frills bargain store since November, when it launched its first TV advertising campaign, for its Deluxe range. It even went on a self-styled ‘claret offensive’ with a new range of fine French wines last month.

Indeed, boss Ronny Gottschlich told the Daily Mail yesterday that he didn’t see even Lidl as a discounter any more, but ‘more of a supermarket’. So forget Tesco – should Waitrose be afraid?

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