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Case Study: From the Ground Up: Annie's Homegrown Builds a Vibrant Business in a Commodity Market

by Ted Mininni  |  
January 30, 2007

Company: Annie's Homegrown
Location: Napa, California
Industry: Consumer packaged goods (B2C)
Annual revenue: Confidential
Number of employees: 65

Quick Read:

This case study outlines how Annie's Homegrown used grassroots marketing to propel itself from a home-based startup selling a commodity food item—packaged macaroni-and-cheese—in small mom-and-pop natural food stores to a business with products that are sold by supermarkets in all 50 states.

The keys to the success of Annie's Homegrown?

  • Grassroots marketing to build consumer demand
  • Great Web site marketing
  • A commitment to natural and organic foods and green packaging;
  • Promotion of social causes valued by its target demographic.


To stand out in a commodity business and achieve market penetration without compromising social values—and without the benefit of a fat marketing budget.


It's difficult to build a business on a commodity product, but savvy marketing that taps into consumers' deeply held values can make it happen. Annie's Homegrown is a case in point.

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Ted Mininni is president of Design Force, Inc. (, a leading brand-design consultancy to consumer product companies (phone: 856-810-2277). Ted is also a regular contributor to the MarketingProfs blog, the Daily Fix.

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