NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- New Clorox (CLX) CEO Benno Dorer is preparing to unveil a slew of fresh products in the January quarter to wrest market share from Procter & Gamble (PG) and Church & Dwight (CHD) next year.
"What you should expect are innovations that cover all our brands," said Dorer on Clorox's plans in an interview at TheStreet's New York City headquarters. Dorer, a 10-year veteran of Clorox that took the reins from long-time CEO Donald Knauss on Nov. 20, added "We like to look at [product innovation] as a mix of singles, doubles and some home-runs." Knauss has since assumed the executive chairman role at Clorox.
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An example of a "single," according to Dorer, is the upcoming launch of a new flavor for Clorox's Hidden Valley salad dressing business. Hidden Valley is a member of Clorox's "lifestyle" segment along with KC Masterpiece barbecue sauce and Brita water filters, to name a few. In fiscal year 2014, the lifestyle division brought in revenue of $939 million, a 0.7% increase from a year earlier, and represented about 17% of Clorox's overall business.
Another "single," hinted Dorer, may be a new Clorox disinfecting wipe that has more grease-fighting power. Home-care products are a particular area of focus for Clorox in 2015. As for a "home run," it would take the shape of an entirely new product such as the 2011 release of the reusable Brita water filtration bottle.
Dorer said hatching new products is vital in the notoriously competitive consumer products industry because "it creates news with customers and increases the assortment." Dorer pointed out Clorox has increased the percentage of sales it derives from new products to 3% annually from 2% a couple years ago.
And the new products scheduled for January from Clorox will be joined with a significantly revised marketing approach on TV and online. "Next year is the year of value across all our communications," remarked Dorer, who said he continues to be a believer in TV marketing. He went on to say Clorox' focus in 2015 will be educating consumers more on how the company's products outperform those of its competitors. Clorox has recently been stressing different usage occasions for its products instead of side-by-side performance comparisons.
There has been a "lack of awareness by consumers that our products are better," said Dorer.
Clorox now spends 31% of its marketing dollars on digital channels, up from just 10% seven years ago.