Luxury Chocolate At Three Calories A Piece

Godiva Chocoiste gives chocoholics not just a fix but an experience.

By By Hollis Ashman, Jacqueline Beckley and Jennifer Vahalik, Consumer Understanding Editors

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While some thought the small size was appropriate, others felt they were too small to be satisfying and “get the chocolate flavor I want.” One suggested if they were slightly bigger, that a single pearl would be sufficient to quell a craving (we suggested eating two of the current size, slowly). In fact, most did not consume the entire box in a single sitting. Most also loved the box and felt it helped make the product worth the price.

When we first discovered this product, the nutrition facts printed on the clear shrink wrap around the container indicated the serving size was the entire tin and contained about 220 calories. Subsequent purchases of the product revealed a change in this information. While the container size and calorie count hasn’t changed, the nutrition facts now indicate the box contains eight servings at 25 calories each. We feel as though we were given permission to eat the entire container, and then that permission was taken away by the change in packaging. Why?

If this is a nod to the current trend of 100-calorie packaging, then we’re glad Godiva chose not to highlight this anywhere on the package – we feel it would somehow cheapen the image.

Interestingly, no one commented on the caloric content of this product. When asked how many calories they thought the whole package might contain, tasters guessed as much as double the actual amount. When we told them the whole box was 220 calories, they felt the calorie count was a bargain. “That’s it for Godiva chocolate, seriously?” said one.

Does the product deliver?

Absolutely! Everyone who already loves Godiva and chocolate was impressed with everything about this product. Even our lone taster who does not care for chocolate raved about it.

Godiva promises that with this product “decadence goes mobile.” Chocolate lovers don’t have to wait to enjoy a premium experience. They can just pop one or two in their mouth while driving, working or whatever.

How to make the idea bigger: Offer larger packages so consumers can refill the container. Tasters were inclined to want to “save the pretty box for anything I might want to carry in my purse.” This would be a play on sustainability and would allow us to have our “own” tin.

Picking up on the shape and the texture and what it drove in our mouths, maybe Godiva could go beyond the chocolate pearls to other small candy-coated chocolates, mints or even medication. The shape so changed what many did with their mouth and tongue that it had us imagining.

Another opportunity might be to increase the availability of the product. Besides Godiva stores, we were only able to find them at the checkout and coffee stands in bookstores and at newsstands at the airport. While offering it in the current channels may be in keeping with the brand image, there may be advantages to making the product more accessible. Especially for those who view the product as “too fancy for me.”

Rating: Excellent. The absolute shock and awe expressed by our tasters at merely being asked to sample this product, even before tasting it, says volumes.

Market potential: Great! Indulgence can be both convenient and special at the same time. Putting this premium experience in a portion-controlled package that does not announce to the world you are watching your calories is a game-changer on multiple levels. Watch this one being adapted by others.



Hollis Ashman and Jacqueline Beckley are principals and Jennifer Vahalik a project manager of the Understanding & Insight Group, a strategy and product development firm that connects with consumers using qualitative and quantitative approaches. See

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