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Tag: Kraft

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Miracle Whip Finds Its Brand Voice

Friday, November 20, 2009

Back in June, Miracle Whip broadcasted its condiment manifesto to Gen Y. Punctuated with the official quivery chalkboard script of all advertising-spawned youth movements and set to a swaying, poly-ethnic crowd kickin’ it kiddie-pool style, a bored (yet defiant!) voice-over proclaims: “We are our own unique, one-of-a-kind flavor. We are Miracle Whip. And we will not tone it down.” Hmmm. A hipster decree from a 76-year-old sandwich spread most famous for its supporting role in my great aunt’s deviled eggs? The campaign was hard to swallow.

At Issue } essential reading

The Future of Commerce Starts With a Tap

Mark Bonchek
Jan 16, 2013

So what's NFC? It technically stands for Near Field Communications, and it enables mobile devices like smartphones to communicate with nearby devices and objects with a simple tap.

Innovation Matters; It's Why You Care More About Apple than Kraft

Adam Hartung
Sep 19, 2012

In short, what was a tired, nearly bankrupt Macintosh company has become the leading marketer of innovation that makes our lives remarkably better. So we care – a lot – about the products Apple offers, how it sells them and how much they cost. We want to know how we can apply them to solve even more problems for ourselves, colleagues, customers and suppliers.

Companies Spend Money, Time on New Corporate Names

EJ Schultz
Apr 9, 2012

There are legitimate reasons why naming companies is a bit more challenging than it used to be. Marketers must contend with instant backlash from critics on social media and the global reality that one phrase in English might take on a completely different meaning overseas (see Kraft). And they must ensure the moniker is not already trademarked.

5 New Rules For A Winning Brand Launch

Robyn Bolton
Mar 27, 2012

With its 2011 corporate revenue estimated at $54 billion and brands in practically every aisle of the grocery store, Kraft is the largest producer of branded, packaged food and beverages in America. So it’s hard to believe that before MiO, the last new category Kraft created was DiGiorno frozen pizza in 1995 and its last new beverage brand was Crystal Light, launched in 1988.

Kraft's Planters Heads for the Peanut Butter Aisle

David Welch
Mar 9, 2012

In what may be the most overdue brand extension in history, Kraft is using the 100-year-old Planters name to speed growth of its mature grocery business.

Brands Step Up for Japan Relief Efforts

Mar 16, 2011

Step back and consider the collective financial power of global brands and it's easy to see how much good they could do in the world. The fact is, many brands make donations and get involved in social and humanitarian causes on a regular basis. But a disaster of the magnitude that struck Japan late last week offers a unique public relations and humanitarian opportunity for brands to participate in relief and recovery.

Green & Black's To Send 'Ambassadors' to D.R.

Dec 7, 2010

Kraft-owned Green & Black's Organic Chocolate is showcasing its Fair Trade Certification credentials with a new "Global Ambassadors" program. The program will send 10 U.S. and U.K. residents to the Dominican Republic to assist the brand in helping the country's cocoa farming community. Participants will spend 14 days in the D.R. next spring, learning about the community and helping to build a gravity-fed water system to ensure consistent access to fresh, potable water.

Behind Kraft's Seismic Shift: Why It's Shaking Up Its Shops

Nov 15, 2010

When Irene Rosenfeld took the CEO slot at Kraft Foods in 2006, she came with a reputation as a take-charge leader unafraid of shaking things up. That is an understatement when it comes to agency relationships. Under the Brooklyn-born Ms. Rosenfeld, North America's largest food company has morphed from a clubby client that prided itself on deep-rooted relationships with Ogilvy and DraftFCB to a demanding marketer aggressively seeking to experiment with new agency partners on its $1.75 billion business.

Mr. Peanut’s New Look? Old School

Stuart Elliott
Nov 8, 2010

On Madison Avenue, there are talking dogs, talking horses, even talking margarine tubs, not to mention talking brand characters like the E*Trade babies and the Keebler elves. But Mr. Peanut, the dapper Planters mascot since 1916, has never spoken — until now.

Yogurt Culture Wars

Oct 26, 2010

A specialty item just a few years ago, the more robust Greek-style yogurt is fast turning into a supermarket staple. Kraft Foods and General Mills are trying to horn in on the action

Tweeters Star In Wheat Thins TV Ads

Jul 26, 2010

Kraft Foods/Nabisco Wheat Thins will take social media marketing integration to a new level this week, when it debuts the first of at least two 30-second national TV commercials featuring consumers who have tweeted positively about the brand.

Kraft Unveils App for Apple's IPad

Jul 13, 2010

While much of the buzz around iPads has focused on publishers and their digital magazines, one of the few brand apps on the market sounds like a publishing project, too. Kraft Foods wowed the iPhone-toting masses with iFood Assistant, one of the first brand apps to actually deliver utility on the smartphone, and now the food marketer is following suit with its first app for Apple's iPad.

Food Brands Get Sociable on Facebook and Twitter

Stuart Elliot
Jul 1, 2010

The number of advertisers with presences in the social media like Facebook, Twitter and YouTube are increasing faster than the lines at the supermarket when the values of the cents-off coupons are being tripled. Now, two familiar brands of baked goods sold by Kraft Foods are stepping up their marketing efforts in social media.

Known Faces Are Displacing the Amateurs in Online Videos

Jun 18, 2010

Just as the unknowns who showed up on screen in the early days of television gave way to radio and movie stars like Jack Benny and Bob Hope, more famous faces are supplanting everyday people in Web series, particularly when the video clips are sponsored by advertisers.

Kraft Bull's-Eye Brand Makes TV Comeback

Jun 16, 2010

Kraft Foods' Bull’s-Eye brand has returned to television, after nearly two decades. A 15-second spot, dubbed “Statue,” was originally scheduled to break on the brand's Website, but Kraft took out a last-minute TV ad during Game 6 of the NBA Finals. The ad shows a cinematic reel-like clip of statue portraits. Meanwhile, a voiceover says: “Bold versus sweet. Let’s see. They build statues of bold men. They don’t build statues of sweet men. Well, they do. But they’re call figurines,” as a figurine of a small boy flashes on the screen.

Showing TV, and Commercials, on the Shelves and in the Aisles

Stuart Elliot
Jun 16, 2010

For many marketers, advertising in stores is an increasingly important way to influence shoppers at the so-called moment of truth, as they finally make up their minds about which brands of soup, soap or cereal to buy — or not buy. Now, a company is hoping to bring commercials to the retail point of purchase on screens that will be attached to shelves and above aisles.

Kraft Foods CEO: That Was Then, This Is Now

Nielsen News
Jun 15, 2010

Kicking off Nielsen’s Consumer 360 conference in Las Vegas, Irene Rosenfeld, Chairman and CEO of Kraft Foods addressed the ways reaching consumers have changed significantly over the last twenty years and how the Internet and social media are increasingly important components of overall marketing strategies. Previously, brands acted as teachers, according to Rosenfeld. Marketing was designed to build an image around a brand with the expectation that consumers would be attracted to it; they would aspire to the brand. Today, that “paradigm is upside down,” as brands want to learn from consumers and find ways to connect with them.

Time For New Market Research Paradigm?

Karlene Lukovitz
Jun 9, 2010

While the Internet and social media are a potential boon to market researchers, they've also raised concerns and ongoing debate about methodology and the ability to project results. Now, one social media-based research firm is charging into the fray with a report that maintains that today's empowered consumers and marketers' need for faster, actionable insights requires an approach that combines the strengths of newer, "humanistic" approaches with those of traditional, experimentally-based research.

Kraft Gives Mayo Brand a 'Bold' Makeover

May 27, 2010

Kraft is looking to spice up the lunchtime sandwich with a new celebrity-backed campaign for its line of flavored mayonnaises. The effort for the Sandwich Shop brand, which kicked off with a 60-second spot during last night's American Idol finale, stars HGTV Design Star judges Candice Olson, Genevieve Gorder and Vern Yip. TV spots, dubbed Tastemakers,” are set up in a makeover reality show format.

Kraft Hopes to Encourage Adults to Revert to a Childhood Favorite

May 27, 2010

Kraft Foods wants grown-ups to get the blues in the night, and in the afternoon and at snack time, too. The “blues” in this instance are the familiar blue boxes of Kraft Macaroni and Cheese Dinner, a product that Kraft has long sold to adults as a meal to make for children. In a new campaign — the first work on the brand from a new creative agency — Kraft tells adults that its macaroni and cheese has, to quote ads for Kellogg’s Frosted Flakes, the taste adults have grown to love.

Kraft Charts New Course For Its Chips Ahoy! Brand

May 24, 2010

Chips Ahoy!, Kraft’s top-selling chocolate chip brand, is giving its eight-year-old “Cookie Guys” campaign the heave-ho to make way for a new effort built around “joy.” The campaign, which coincides with new products and packaging, centers on the moments of exultation moms and children alike derive from eating the cookie. A spot launching this week, for instance, shows kids moving and grooving each time someone opens a package of Chips Ahoy! The spot is set to the tune of the 1979 R&B hit “Bustin’ Loose,” by Chuck Brown & the Soul Searchers. Tagline: “There’s a lotta joy in Chips Ahoy!

Jell-O Gets Another Shot With Bill Cosby

May 17, 2010

Bill Cosby is bringing the giggles back to jiggling desserts. The comedian is reteaming with Jell-O after a decade-long break as its pitchman, only this time around he's not in front of the camera, as he was from 1974 to 1999. Cosby is executive producing its new "Hello Jell-O" campaign which kicks off today with a new logo and series of spots, a multimillion-dollar effort that's the gelatin and pudding brand's biggest marketing effort today

How To Create An Adaptive Global Marketing Organization

May 6, 2010

CMOs are entering a new period of organizational change as they restructure to minimize costs, maximize flexibility and place digital and social media at the heart of their global strategies. In fact, 75% of chief marketers are either restructuring their marketing organizations now or will do so by the end of 2011, according to a new Forrester Research survey.

Kraft Brands Go To The Movies

May 1, 2010

The world's second-largest food company and National CineMedia have inked a marketing alliance that will bring Kraft brands such as Oscar Mayer Lunchables, Stride gum and Ritz crackers to the big screen. The agreement marks the first time a food advertiser has created long-form, branded content for the cinema. Kraft's campaign, launching today, will include two-minute-and-thirty-second original entertainment segments -- along with traditional shorter spots -- in NCM's FirstLook pre-feature program running on its digital network of 15,400 screens.

Kraft Spreads the Word About Athenos with Sampling Effort

Feb 26, 2010

Kraft continues to step up the marketing behind its Athenos hummus brand with the launch of a restaurant sampling tour and a “true or false” online game. The sampling tour, which is part of the brand’s ongoing “100 percent olive oil” campaign, kicks off at Cellar 56 restaurant in Atlanta tonight (Thursday), followed by similar events in Denver and Chicago early next month. Participating restaurants in the three cities will serve up bite-size treats with Athenos hummus in hopes of giving diners their own at-home entertaining ideas, Kraft said.

Package-Goods Marketers Vow to Boost Spending

Emily Bryson York and Jack Neff
Feb 19, 2010

Consumer package-goods companies found a rare point of agreement at the Consumer Analyst Group of New York conference this week: the need for continued increases in marketing support. Marketers battling private label from Kraft to Procter & Gamble and General Mills promised bigger investments in advertising, in-store promotion, shelf signage, coupons and packaging. Hershey and Heinz, which have lagged the package-food industry in marketing spending, are racing to bridge the gap. Heinz CEO William R. Johnson noted "the industry's renewed focus on innovation and marketing in response to the challenge of store brands."

Behind Kraft's Marketing Makeover: From New Ad Agencies to New Attitude

Feb 8, 2010

Quick: Name one highly creative advertiser. Bet your first choice wasn't Kraft. The company that brought the world "My bologna has a first name" and "We helped!" for Shake and Bake is unlikely to ever go down in the ad annals next to Nike or Apple. But North America's largest food company -- about to become even larger with the addition of Cadbury -- is making strides toward updating the look and tone of its advertising while keeping it as accessible as possible for consumers.

Cadbury And Kraft Unite, But Will Consumers Taste Success?

Feb 5, 2010

Negotiations have ceased and Cadbury is now officially a Kraft brand, but it didn't come cheap: Kraft spent $18.5 billion. (What a difference one month makes since AP published a $19.5 billion estimate in January.) Nevertheless, Cadbury's majority shareholders agreed to an acquisition that will allow Kraft to take the reigns.

Prepare for the Age of the Splinternet

Jan 28, 2010

New products like Apple's iPad are changing the Internet in fundamental ways. Author Josh Bernoff talks with Kai Ryssdal about how the golden age of the Internet is over, and how the Web is shattering into pieces.

Kraft, Cadbury Would Control 15% Of Confectionery Market

Jan 20, 2010

When all was said and done -- after all the Sturm und Drang of hallowed British brands being tainted by crass American fake-cheese marketers -- all it took is what it usually does: the right amount of cash and stock. All told, more than $19 billion worth. The Kraft acquisition of Cadbury seals the legacy of dealmaker Bruce Wasserstein, who advised Kraft CEO Irene Rosenfeld as CEO of Lazard before he passed away a month after the initial bid in September, Brett Foley, Jacqueline Simmons and Zachary R. Mider report in Bloomberg.

Kraft and Cadbury Agree on Friendly Merger

Michael J. De La Merced and Chris V. Nicholson
Jan 19, 2010

After months of fiercely resisting any deal, Cadbury agreed Tuesday to an improved takeover offer from Kraft, worth about $19 billion, to create the world’s largest confectioner. Together Kraft, the maker of Oreo cookies and Ritz crackers, and Cadbury, the producer of Trident gum and Dairy Milk chocolates, would have more than $50 billion in annual revenue and a big presence in markets from the United States to India. The deal continues a trend seen over the past decade, in which food companies have sought to gain scale by combining with one another. Most recently, Mars bought the William Wrigley Jr. Co. in 2008 for $23 billion.

Kraft to Sweeten Value of Cadbury Bid

Jan 18, 2010

Kraft is planning to raise the value of its £10.5bn hostile bid for Cadbury as early as Monday to more than 800p a share by adding more cash after investors rejected its initial offer. The US food group is considering taking advantage of Monday’s US public holiday, Martin Luther King Day – on which US stock markets are closed – to put forward a revised offer after its stock closed on Friday at $29.58, near 52-week highs.

Cadbury Again Rejects Kraft’s Takeover Bid

Jan 12, 2010

Cadbury reported increases in 2009 revenue and dividends Tuesday and highlighted a strong forecast for 2010 as it seeks to persuade shareholders to reject a hostile takeover bid from Kraft. “We generated good revenue growth despite the weakest economic conditions in 80 years,” Todd Stitzer, chief executive of Cadbury, said in a statement.

Why Did Kraft Sell Frozen-Pizza Cash Cow To Nestle?

Jan 7, 2010

Kraft Foods might have moved a step closer to acquiring Cadbury, raising dough for a bid by selling its thriving frozen-pizza business to Nestle for $3.7 billion. But the move raises a prickly question: Why does Kraft want to trade pizza for chocolate?

Cadbury, Hershey Directors Hold Talks

Jeffrey McCracken, Dana Cimilluca and Ilan Brat
Jan 7, 2010

Board members at Cadbury PLC, resisting a hostile takeover bid by Kraft Foods Inc., have held talks with directors at Hershey Co. to encourage a rival offer, several people familiar with the matter said. The Cadbury board members have told the Hershey directors that they would support a bid by the Pennsylvania company, and they have provided some guidance on the kind of price that would draw board support, these people said. In these talks, Hershey has sought direction from Cadbury and disclosed financial terms and the structure of a possible offer. Hershey has also inquired whether Cadbury would be open to selling certain assets, these people said. In response, Cadbury has provided "reasonable guidance without specifics," said one of the people.

Buffett Hits Kraft on Cadbury

Dana Cimilluca And Jeffrey McCracken
Jan 6, 2010

Investor Warren Buffett waded into the rancorous battle for Cadbury PLC, issuing a rebuke of Kraft Foods Inc.'s just-sweetened, nearly $17 billion takeover offer for the British confectionary company. As Kraft's largest shareholder—with a 9.4% stake—Mr. Buffett's holding company, Berkshire Hathaway Inc., said it wouldn't support the issuance of new shares to pay for a Cadbury deal.

Kraft Sweetens Cadbury Bid

Dana Cimilucca And Cecilie Rohwedder
Jan 5, 2010

Kraft Foods Inc. sweetened its hostile takeover offer for Cadbury PLC on Tuesday, offering to tweak the cash-and-share mix of its $16 billion bid, but Cadbury and some of its investors quickly dismissed the new bid as still too low. The new offer follows an agreement Kraft reached to sell its U.S. and Canadian frozen pizza business to Nestlé SA, the Swiss consumer giant, for $3.7 billion. Kraft said it would use net proceeds from the deal, which it estimates at 60 pence (97 U.S. cents) per Cadbury share, to give Cadbury shareholders a "partial cash alternative" to its existing offer, which had been made up of 60% Kraft stock and 40% cash.

Marketers: Expect A Return To Core Brand Value--And Values--In 2010

Allen Adamson
Jan 4, 2010

Call it 2010. Call it twenty-ten, or even 2K10. No matter how you refer to the last year of the first decade of the 21st Century, everyone in the marketing is wondering what the past few sobering years will mean for brands and consumer behavior. It doesn't take a seer, or even a branding professional, to declare that consumers will continue to demand value, no matter which direction the economy goes. Consumers have learned--some the hard way--that financial discipline is a must. They will also demand that the values practiced by the companies with which they choose to do business are good and honest and trustworthy. And lest any company thinks it can put one over on anyone, a text, a blog, a YouTube video or a Tweet will quickly prove otherwise.

Kraft Makes a Bet on At-Home Eating

Dec 30, 2009

The casual-dining industry may be looking for sunny indicators as to what 2010 may bring, but Kraft is betting big that consumers will continue to eat at home next year. The world's second-largest food company is unveiling 20 products, many of them designed to help consumers re-create restaurant experiences at home.

Cadbury: More Than an Iconic Brand

Dec 16, 2009

Since September I have been watching uneasily as Kraft has upped the stakes in its takeover bid for Cadbury, Britain's favourite confectioner. After repeated rebuffals, Cadbury this week dismissed the US food conglomerate's $16bn offer as "derisory" and set out higher profit targets in an effort to persuade investors that the company would be better off remaining independent. Cadbury's CEO and members of its founding family have been holding their ground against a seemingly inexorable push by investors and other interested parties, including Hershey and Italian confectioner Ferrero, to end the company's long independence. All the overtures hold out the prospect of a very different future for the 185-year-old English company, which is rooted in the Quaker principles of ethics and social responsibility.

Kraft Steps Up War Of Words With Cadbury

Dec 15, 2009

Kraft Foods on Tuesday sought to counter the arguments offered by Cadbury against its £10.3bn hostile bid, continuing the war of words between the two companies. Irene Rosenfeld, Kraft chairman and chief executive, also repeated her insistence that Kraft would remain disciplined in its pursuit of the British confectioner.

Cadbury Chief to Hit Back at Hostile Kraft Bid

Jenny Wiggins
Dec 14, 2009

Cadbury's chief executive will today make a staunch defence of the confectionery group's future as a standalone company as he urges shareholders to reject Kraft's £9.9bn hostile bid. Todd Stitzer, along with Cadbury chairman Roger Carr and chief financial officer Andrew Bonfield, will unveil the company's formal defence to several hundred investors in a 90-minute presentation.

What's the Next Marketing Platform? How to Measure Success?

Dec 10, 2009

At this year's Media Mavens annual luncheon in New York, Advertising Age honored 16 of the industry's most innovative thinkers from big name marketers including Kraft, Coca-Cola, Ford and Burger King. Honorees, however, had to earn their lunch by answering questions that show off just how smart they are. Here are six bits of wisdom that Ad Age's Media Mavens imparted this year, including what their clients are looking for, what the necessary elements for a successful social media campaign are, how to evolve a well-known brand into a services company and what technologies have the potential to be successful marketing mediums.

Hershey, Trust Near Cadbury Decision

Dec 10, 2009

Hershey Co. and the philanthropic trust that controls it are nearing a final decision on whether to bid on candy maker Cadbury PLC, said several people familiar with the matter. The two sides—Hershey management and the trust's board—are tilting toward making a bid but haven't made a final decision, these people said.

How Kraft Won In China

Vivian Wai-yin Kwok
Dec 8, 2009

France's Groupe Danone finally lost its foothold in China this fall after a two-year legal battle with local beverage maker Wahaha. Apple's iPhone logged a disappointing debut there in November. Figuring out the Chinese retail market -- which posted 5.9 trillion yuan ($867.6 billion) in total sales in the first half of this year -- is far from a piece of cake for some big international corporations. But not for Kraft. The president of Kraft International, Sanjay Khosla, told Forbes how the world's second largest food company overhauled its recipe for success to align with the particular appetites of China's 1.3 billion people. It now boasts the biggest market share in China in two major categories: cookies and powdered beverages.

Cadbury Warms to Hershey Tie-up

Jenny Wiggins
Nov 28, 2009

Todd Stitzer, Cadbury chief executive, has signalled support for a possible tie-up with Hershey, declaring the US confectioner a better cultural fit with the chocolate maker than Kraft, the food conglomerate that has launched a hostile £10bn bid. Hershey, which has owned the licence for the Cadbury brand in the US since 1988, is contemplating a bid for Cadbury after the decision by Kraft of the US this month to go hostile. If Hershey can finance the bid, it is likely to make a friendly offer.

Hershey Moves Closer to Cadbury Bid

Nov 26, 2009

The charitable trust that controls Hershey, the US chocolate maker, has taken the first steps towards winning the local political approval it may need to outbid Kraft with a $17bn offer for Cadbury.

Kraft, Hershey, Ferrero All Want To Take A Bite Out Of Cadbury

Nov 25, 2009

Cadbury is up for grabs, and as we have been following, it looks like like Hershey and Kraft Foods are hungry for a takeover. Kraft has been at the center of the multi-billion struggle with no signs of giving up, though Nestlé is considering placing a rival bid for the chocolate company, which may incite a hostile reaction from Kraft. Regardless, Cadbury knows who the true power-players are.

“Simple” Sells

Nov 10, 2009

According to a recent article in USA Today, “simple” will mean to consumers in 2010 what “cheap” means in 2009. In fact, the move to simplify is already underway, because “Simple is better,” as stated in the first line of the article: “Marketers such as Starbucks discover that simple sells.” The gist: consumers like food products that contain as few ingredients as possible...as long as those few ingredients look and feel healthier...and as long as they can pronounce them. Interesting premise. Noteworthy trend.

Kraft Foods Chooses to Phase Out 'Smart Choices' Label

Oct 29, 2009

Northfield-based Kraft Foods Inc. said Wednesday that it plans to phase out use of the "Smart Choices" logo, an industry-led nutrition labeling initiative that federal food regulators last week implied could mislead consumers. Packaged-foods rivals General Mills, Kellogg and Unilever also said this week that they plan to phase out the Smart Choices label, which was unveiled a year ago and formally launched in grocery stores in August. Late last week, the Smart Choices program said it would "postpone" operations, and Kraft said then that it had no plans to stop putting it on products where it already appeared.

Marketers Such as Starbucks Discover That Simple Sells

Oct 28, 2009

Simple is better. This could be 2010's most powerful marketing mantra. If 2009's hottest sales pitch was all about buying stuff on the cheap, 2010 marketing will increasingly stress less as more, as in fewer parts, additives or ingredients. While the trend is taking hold in many product categories, including health and beauty items, nowhere is it more apparent than with things we eat and drink. This may be more marketing magic than reality. How can a product made by Kraft, Campbell's or Dreyer's be made to sound as simply healthy as something made fresh in your kitchen? "One way to spin this is talk about how few ingredients your product contains," says Tom Vierhile, product analyst at researcher Datamonitor.

You Can Pry Coke, Tide and Kraft From Consumers' Cold, Dead Hands

Oct 28, 2009

Fascinating, counterintuitive data coming out of a year-long consumer behavior study finds that Kraft, Coca-Cola and Tide are the three brands least likely to be traded for store brands. The study should worry name brand owners, since "only 37% of consumers say name brands are more reliable, and 39% believe name brands are better quality products." The data are edifying. Age breakdowns show consumers growing less brand loyal (and more price-conscious) as they get older. The huge numbers who are turning to private labels find Wal-Mart, Kroger, and Target to be the stores with the best selections.

Pizza Hut Sales Drop as Consumers Heat at Home

Oct 7, 2009

Pizza Hut, one of the largest US pizza restaurant and home delivery chains, has been hit by a sharp slump in orders as competitors tout the lower cost of their frozen, heat-at-home alternatives. Yum Brands, owner of the Pizza Hut brand, said on Tuesday that comparable sales at its more than 6,000 US franchised and company owned locations had dropped 13 per cent during its third quarter, compared with the same period last year.

Kraft Product Naming Swap: iSnack 2.0 Out, Cheesybite In

Oct 7, 2009

It doesn't really surprise me that the iSnack 2.0 product name for the new cheesy Vegemite product was pulled, leading some pundits to say that even if the (admittedly terrible) iSnack 2.0 name was a marketing gimmick, it might have done harm to the brand. Kraft, the makers of Vegemite, has had plenty of media attention over the last couple of weeks, but unfortunately, most of it has been negative. Lots of bloggers are even getting sick of the iSnack naming hoopla. Amazingly, Kraft went back to consumers and held another online competition and this time around "Cheesybite" was the name that came out on top, which is a big improvement.

Serena Williams’s Ad Deals Survive Her Outburst on Court

Sep 29, 2009

In the wake of Serena Williams’s profanity-laced outburst at the United States Open on Sept. 12, when she threatened to shove a tennis ball down a line judge’s throat, some pondered the fate of her endorsement deals. But the No. 2 ranked player apologized, and two of her biggest sponsors, Nike and Kraft Foods, told Advertising Age afterward that they supported her. A new sponsor, Tampax, the Procter & Gamble tampon brand, has signed a deal with Ms. Williams, who is featured in print ads and Web-only videos. The ads, by Leo Burnett USA of Chicago, were produced before the kerfuffle; print ads had already gone to press in magazines including Teen Vogue, and the brand remains steadfast.

How Brands Can Build a Successful App Strategy

Sep 24, 2009

More than a year into the age of the iPhone app, brands are starting to get on board -- and best practices are emerging. At Wednesday's Apps for Brands event in New York, marketers taught other marketers what's worked for them. Here are 12 lessons culled from the day, during which MLB.com CEO Bob Bowman and marketers from Kraft, Bank of America, Benjamin Moore and AKQA convened to talk about what they've learned from their early, successful forays into the space.

Hey Marketers, Make iPhone Apps Like These

Sep 15, 2009

There might be an app for everything, but does everything need an app? When it comes to brands, it's easy to wonder if the rush to get into the App Store is more about marketers snapping up the shiniest new wonder than thinking about apps as strategic-marketing tools. Luckily, as the app business has grown, the apps themselves have grown up. While the Zippo lighter -- enormously popular at 5 million downloads and counting -- remains a bit of an anomaly, most branded apps have moved from the simple "wow" or novelty factor to include branded utility, relationship building and even sales.

Why Kraft Is 'Pheeling' Good About Cream Cheese

Sep 4, 2009

Kraft Foods is introducing a new campaign behind its Philadelphia cream cheese, playing up the emotional connections consumers feel with the brand. New ads show the various uses for cream cheese, and use the word "pheeling" (a combination of “Philly” and “feeling”) to describe a happy state of mind. One spot, breaking next Monday, reinforces this theme by showing a boy spreading cream cheese on a bagel for his mother, a husband and wife indulging in an evening snack of strawberries and cream cheese, and a girl helping her grandmother prepare dessert for the family. In each instance, the people smile and laugh together because of moments created by Philadelphia cream cheese.

Media, Marketers, Madison Ave Just Mad for Apple IPhone

Aug 24, 2009

If you've wondered why the marketing world is obsessed with creating apps for the iPhone, take a stroll down the hallways of Kraft Foods, Gannett and German publisher Axel Springer. There you'll see a sea of iPhones as the brand makes incursions on RIM's BlackBerry, once acknowledged as the smartphone of choice for corporate America. In a recent conference call, Apple Chief Operating Officer Tim Cook said about 20% of Fortune 100 companies have purchased a total of 10,000 or more iPhones since the handset's release in 2007, and scores of government agencies and businesses have each purchased more than 25,000 iPhones for their organizations.

Marketers Break Into Homes By Sponsoring Parties

Aug 20, 2009

One evening earlier this week 14 guests arrived at Diana Burroughs' condo in Manhattan's West Village; seven of them were dogs. After sniffing one another and joining in a dog-and-owner look-alike contest, the pooches happily feasted on filet-mignon- and potato-flavored kibbles from Chef Michael's Canine Creations. Nestle Purina in recent weeks has spent $150,000 sponsoring 1,000 home gatherings like this three-hour party to market its newest line of dog food.

Purity of Federal 'Organic' Label Is Questioned

Jul 4, 2009

Three years ago, U.S. Department of Agriculture employees determined that synthetic additives in organic baby formula violated federal standards and should be banned from a product carrying the federal organic label. Today the same additives, purported to boost brainpower and vision, can be found in 90 percent of organic baby formula. The government's turnaround, from prohibition to permission, came after a USDA program manager was lobbied by the formula makers and overruled her staff. That decision and others by a handful of USDA employees, along with an advisory board's approval of a growing list of non-organic ingredients, have helped numerous companies win a coveted green-and-white "USDA Organic" seal on an array of products.

Cause Marketing with a Social Twist

Jun 9, 2009

With the Internet’s ability to empower individuals, social media platforms have become powerful forces for change and community action. Social media interconnects millions of people at any given point providing everyone with a megaphone that can be heard far and fast.

Private Label Growth Slows

Jun 7, 2009

Since the recession began, private label has become a major threat, biting into food earnings among companies like Kellogg and Kraft. Now, with signs of an economic recovery on the horizon, price increases abating and consumer confidence on the rise, sales of store branded products—though still growing—are tapering off, analysts say.

Punishing Your Fans: A Lesson From Kraft

May 29, 2009

I recently received this email from Brandy Amidon, the Princess of Particulars and CPA at Brains on Fire, yesterday.

Cause Marketing Meets Social Media

May 18, 2009

"What we've learned is it's not the cause but it's the idea of a brand truly doing good that has a significant impact through social media," said Joe Marchese, CEO of SocialVibe, a Los Angeles-based startup that runs cause-related social campaigns for brands like Kraft, Sprint and PowerBar. "When you do something good, it used to be that you had to buy a bunch of media and tell people or do PR. Now, the potential is for people to tell each other that you do good."

Miracle Whip Whips Up Social App

May 14, 2009

Kraft Foods' Miracle Whip brand is dipping its toes into social utilities with a browser application that lets users share comments on Web-based content via their social networks. Zingr is a Firefox plug-in that taps into users' social networks and allows them to leave comments on various Web pages across the Internet. After downloading the plug-in and verifying their Facebook information, users can append comments up to 160 characters on Web pages. The comments appear as small, expandable Zingr dialog boxes that can be dragged and dropped anywhere on the page.

Kool-Aid Man Returns in Race Against Soda

May 13, 2009

Kool-Aid is honing in on its pitch against soda as an affordable drink with a new campaign breaking today, which shows the Kool-Aid mascot outrunning a liter of cola.

Cans Are Hot!

May 6, 2009

Recognizing recession-weary consumers are buying more shelf stable products, Del Monte, General Mills, Kraft and others are focusing their marketing and R&D efforts on the formerly unsexy center of the supermarket.

Kraft Goes Beyond the Bagel

Apr 3, 2009

Cream cheese: It’s not just for breakfast anymore. That's the message Kraft is trying to get across with a new ad campaign aimed at fans of its Philadelphia brand, who are increasingly using it as a topper on snacks like strawberries and celery sticks.

Food Marketers Get Selective About Brands to Support

Mar 27, 2009

As supermarket brands pummel its business, the food industry is increasingly picking and choosing among its brands for the one to back.

Kraft Contemporizes Canadian Cracker Brand

Mar 15, 2009

Kraft has introduced a new jingle for its Triscuit brand in Canada in an effort to refresh the cracker’s image.

Proof Is In The Pudding: Foodmakers Cut Offerings

Feb 17, 2009

If you want to see how the nation's foodmakers are weathering the recession, the proof is in the pudding. Kraft Foods, the nation's largest food maker, will no longer sell Handi-Snacks pudding to retail customers. Food companies from Sara Lee Food to H.J. Heinz are trimming their offerings to focus marketing dollars on their higher-margin, best-selling brands and retain consumers, who are trading down in the recession.

Velveeta Gets Ready to Party

Jan 29, 2009

On Sunday, thousands of women across the country are expected to welcome friends to their homes not just to watch the Super Bowl, but to dip into bowls of Velveeta ultimate queso dip. Trying to get more consumers to dip their chips into Velveeta, Kraft turned to House Party Inc., an Irvington, N.Y., marketing firm whose specialty is setting up parties to promote clients' products.

Fiber Being Pitched As Tasty, Sexy Even

Jan 18, 2009

Fiber, the chewy, gummy, indigestable substance that is said to promote both weight loss and regularity, is not known for its taste, but you wouldn’t know it from the industry’s latest spin. New ads from General Mills, Kraft and Kellogg put taste at the forefront while those other properties go largely unmentioned.

Kraft Hits on Killer App for IPhone Marketing

Jan 18, 2009

One of the coolest apps on the iPhone isn't Pandora or Facebook: It's recipes and shopping lists for Kraft singles, Jell-O gelatin and Minute Rice.

Kraft Gives Facebook Users Reason to Share

Dec 30, 2008

Kraft hopes the holidays are for sharing -- both goodwill and its new Facebook application. Kraft will donate six meals to hungry families through the Feeding America charity for each friend users convince to add the application.

CEO Forum: Irene Rosenfeld Says Innovation is Key For Kraft

Dec 11, 2008

One of just six female CEOs at the top 500 corporations, the 27-year food-industry veteran made innovation a top priority. Rosenfeld shared her thoughts about her company, the economy and leadership with USA TODAY's David Lieberman at the ninth USA TODAY CEO Forum in conjunction with Duke University's Fuqua School of Business.

Kraft, Folgers, Olay Top Baby Boomer Gals' WOM

Nov 18, 2008

A new study's tracking of a year's worth of online and offline conversations also determined that boomer women have "higher quality" WOM than younger women do.

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