Dynamic Marketing Communiqué

The PROTEIN that Your Family Deserves: How does this company expand its reach and drive long-term profitable growth? [Monday: Marketing Marvels]

October 17, 2021

Protein is an important part of a healthy diet. 

This nutrient is essential for building and repairing body tissues and providing energy for the body. 

Do you know that there’s been an increasing demand for protein nowadays? 

According to an article from the US National Center for Biotechnology Information, this demand is due to a growing recognition of the nutrient’s role in a healthy diet and body. 

…and one company is upgrading its protein portfolio to address consumers’ changing preferences and eating lifestyle. 

Any ideas about what this company is? 

Tyson Foods!

Tyson Foods, Inc. is the world’s second largest processor and marketer of chicken, beef, and pork products. The company manages major food brands such as: 

  • Jimmy Dean 
  • Hillshire Farm 
  • Ball Park 
  • Wright Brand 
  • Aidells 
  • State Fair 

As of 2020, Tyson Foods has 10 offices scattered across the US, Europe, and Asia-Pacific region. 

How does the company expand its international presence and deliver relevant food innovations to consumers worldwide? 

One way is by targeting markets with “phenomenal potential.” 

In 2015, Tyson Foods spent CNY 100 million to promote its brand in China and launch 22 new frozen food items specifically designed for the Chinese market. 

According to Bill Mayer, Tyson China’s Vice President and General Manager, the reason for the launch was to meet the increasing demand for pre-marinated and ready-to-cook food in China. 

Additionally, these new frozen food products were tailored to address Chinese consumers’ tastes and preferences. 

Tyson Foods sold and raised awareness about these new products through 3 main segments:  


… industrial distribution channels (independent entities that act as intermediaries between Tyson Foods and other businesses)… 

… and e-commerce! 

In fact, Tyson Foods strengthened its partnership with leading Chinese e-retailer Yihaodian.com after launching the new frozen food products. This was because a lot of Chinese consumers are buying goods online. 

According to Mayer, 

“There is a whole set of consumers who are mainly, if not only, doing their shopping online. So if we are not there, we are going to miss a major segment of the population.” 

Mayer also said that e-commerce is a profit growth driver for Tyson Foods in China. That’s why the company heavily invests in this sector to reach more consumers. 

What else does Tyson Foods do to expand its business and grow its target market reach? 

Expand its brands’ portfolio by unveiling new food product innovations

In 2018, the company’s enterprise leadership team adapted new business strategies to drive growth to the protein portfolio. 

These strategies included: 

  • Modernizing Tyson Foods’ multi-billion dollar brands

Under this strategy, the company launched food product innovations on brands that are customer favorites. 

  • Jimmy Dean: Tyson Foods launched Egg’wiches, a new line of frozen breakfast sandwiches without the bread, and new egg white scrambles to build on the success of the brand’s Simple Scrambles Breakfast Cups
  • Hillshire Farm: Tyson Foods launched a line of premium carved all-natural meats for snacks, salads, and wraps along with a new campaign built around the idea that food made with care brings consumers closer to a happy and healthy life. 
  • Creating iconic brands and businesses

Using a startup mindset, Tyson Foods took advantage of new products and partnerships. 

One of the collaborations the company made under this strategy? 

An exclusive partnership with Tajin, one of Mexico’s most authentic and recognized spice brands! 

Through this team-up, Tyson Foods expanded its protein know-how, culinary capability, and brand building capabilities with Tajin’s portfolio of spiced meatballs, smoked sausages with mangoes, and boneless chicken bites. 

  • Building new growth models

Tyson Foods moved beyond traditional categories to offer something new in the consumer packaged goods sector. 

These were some of the highlights of this strategy: 

  • The launch of a new brand called Green Street, which is a series of protein-rich plant-based meal bowls, to address consumer demand for ready-to-eat meals. 
  • Strategic investments through Tyson Ventures to support entrepreneurs who pioneered breakthroughs in food and food-focused technologies. These investments included Beyond Meat, Memphis Meat, and Tovala
  • The establishment of the Tyson Innovation Lab, which enabled the company to explore new approaches to food innovations. The lab consists of a team of designers, chefs, scientists, and supply chain experts who are working together to turn an idea into an in-market solution. 

According to Tom Hayes, President and CEO of Tyson Foods, these marketing and innovation strategies helped the company achieve long-term profitable growth. He also added, 

“Tyson Foods is transforming from a company with a strong heritage in chicken to a modern food company that is challenging the industry status quo.” 

The company’s next objectives? 

Investing in its own fleet of refrigerated vehicles and moving from a B2B (business to business) company to a B2C (business to client) company! 

In the past five years, Tyson Foods, Inc. has recorded revenues of:

  • USD 37.0 billion in 2016
  • USD 38.3 billion in 2017
  • USD 40.0 billion in 2018
  • USD 42.4 billion in 2019
  • USD 43.2 billion in 2020

Clearly, the company’s strategies in reaching markets with phenomenal potential and innovating healthy food products paid off as Tyson Foods recorded increasing revenues in the past 5 years. 

Tyson Foods, Inc.’s Earning Power: Valens Research vs. As-reported numbers 

Tyson Foods, Inc. (TSN:USA) makes for a great case study that we come back to regularly. One great reason?

The company has proven itself to be a better earning power generator than investors might think.

So, how well has TSN been growing its business in the past years?

The research doesn’t lie—nor do the results. Earning power (the blue bars) continues to show results higher on average than what traditional databases show.

The blue bars in the chart above represent TSN’s earning power (Uniform Return On Assets). Historically, TSN has seen generally robust profitability. Its Uniform ROA ranged from 1% to 19% in the past sixteen years, or an average of 10%. Uniform ROA is at 16% in 2020.  

The global ROA is just 6%. 

The orange bars are the company’s as-reported financial information. If you relied on these numbers, you will see a company with understated profitability. As-reported ROA (return on assets, a measure of earning power) only ranged from 2% to 9% in the past fifteen years. Its as-reported ROA in 2020 was only at 7%, which is more than 2 times lower than its Uniform ROA in 2020. 

That’s what you’ll see in Yahoo Finance, Google Finance, and most other databases.

The company’s stock price also performed better than the rest of the stock market over the decade, which we can see in the blue line in the chart below. Its returns have been well above the market.

The numbers show that TSN has been doing well and making a profit. 

“Consumers expect more from food companies today.” 

This is one of the challenges that motivate Tyson Foods to constantly manufacture high-quality products that are tailored to consumers’ needs and wants. 

According to CEO Hayes, Tyson Foods promises to combine its size and scale with agility to make the kinds of food that people want to eat―especially protein-rich foods, which are booming due to an increasing acknowledgement of a healthy eating lifestyle. 

… and while working to fulfill that promise, the company’s vision remains the same: 

To continually evolve into a modern food company, deliver top-tier returns for shareholders, and raise the world’s expectations for what good food can do. 

The result? 

More opportunities to expand Tyson Foods’ reach while “sustainably feeding the world with the fastest growing protein brands!”

About The Dynamic Marketing Communiqué’s
“Monday Marketing Marvels”

Too often, industry experts and the marketing press sing the praises of some company’s marketing strategy. 

…Only for the audience to later find out that their product was a flop, or worse, that the company went bankrupt.

The true ROI in marketing can’t be separated from the business as a whole. 

What good is a marketing case study if one can’t prove that the company’s efforts actually paid off?

At the end of the day, either the entire business is successful or it isn’t. And the role of marketing is always paramount to that success. 

Every Monday, we publish a case study that highlights the world’s greatest marketing strategies. 

However, the difference between our case studies and the numerous ones out there, is that we will always make certain that the firm really did generate and demonstrate earning power worthy of study in the first place (compliments of Valens Research’s finance group).

By looking at the true earnings of a company, we can now rely on those successful businesses to get tips and insights on what they did right.

We’ll also study the greatest marketing fails and analyze what they did wrong, or what they needed to improve on. We all make our mistakes, but better we learn from others’ mistakes—and earlier, rather than later.

Hope you found this week’s marketing marvel interesting and helpful. 

Stay tuned for next week’s Monday Marketing Marvels!


Kyle Yu 
Head of Marketing 
Valens Dynamic Marketing Capabilities 
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