Friday, March 31, 2006

Bear Naked

Is it possible for a new brand of cereal to successfully enter into an already crowded market?
Bear Naked may be an exception. They are an innovative company delivering "natural" cereals, but with creative marketing and packaging that may break through the clutter. They're worth watching.


Thursday, March 30, 2006

Cereal restaurant in Canada

I've been tracking the growth of cereal restaurants in the U.S. But, now it appears that the trend is taking off beyond these borders. James Calder (blog) reports that one is about to open in Toronto, simply called "Cereal Bar".
The trend continues ...

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neopets cereal

We've seen sports figures, movies and TV shows promoted with cereal, but this could be the first time that a major website has taken the form of a breakfast cereal. General Mills is selling neopets Island Berry Crunch, based on the popular virtual pet website for children, neopets. While this should be a hit among kids mesmerized by their favorite online world, some critics are very concerned about the tight relationship between the website and marketers.

What's next? Google cereal?

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Monday, March 27, 2006

Cereal restaurant business lessons

The Miami Herald has an insightful article regarding the business lessons being learned by one of the upstart cereal restaurants, The Cereal Bowl.
As an innovative new business concept and model, there are many things to learn and this article provides some valuable insights. For example, the founders of The Cereal Bowl expected college students as primary clients. Instead, they are surprised to see a large number of youngsters and families.
Important lessons for anyone wanting to jump on the bandwagon.


Sunday, March 26, 2006

Cocoa Freakies

I've been tracking ebay for cereal boxes for several years, and I've never seen anything quite like this. (It could be a record for the sale of a collectible cereal box?). Previously I've seen rare boxes sell in the $500-$600 range.
A 1973 box of Cocoa Freakies (empty) sold Friday for $1302.00! (ebay item 7228255334). Obviously a unique box that generated a strong nostalgic response.

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Thursday, March 23, 2006

Alpha-Bits nostalgia

A few days ago, along with my regular blog review, I pointed out Nabisco's Spoonmen at "Boss" Cool Stuff. Author Bill Earl pointed out that last month he had another cereal nostalgia post featuring the Alpha-Bits Postman that appeared on early boxes. Take a look!

Tuesday, March 21, 2006

Milk and Cereal

Several months ago I posted on the popularity of a homemade music video made by two college students based on a song "Milk and Cereal".
Popularity is now an understatement. It has almost become a cult following with literally hundreds of copycat versions appearing on the Internet. The fun, catchy tune is catching on like wildfire. See the original on YouTube, and note the links for the other versions. LINK

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Monday, March 20, 2006

Cereal on the "The Apprentice"

Cereal gets attention on this week's "The Apprentice" TV show on NBC. Teams are given the task to design billboards launching Post Grape Nuts Trail Mix Crunch Cereal.

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Sunday, March 19, 2006

Cereal and bloggers

Significant blog postings in the last few weeks pertaining to cereal:
"Boss" Cool Stuff highlights Nabisco's Spoonmen from the past.
shonuff reflects on the problem of cereal "dust"
College student, zibbyoneal, devotes an entire week to "Salad and Cereal Week" (also here)
The Impulsive Buy reviews the new Kellogg's Eggo Cereal.

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Saturday, March 18, 2006

Another Cereality lawsuit

It's been a few months since I've reported on Cereality taking legal action against competitors (LINK 1) (LINK 2) (LINK 3), but it appears that they are at it again.
Yesterday Cereality filed a lawsuit against Cerealicious, contending that Cerealicioius has infringed on their trademarks and engaged in unfair competitive activities. (News Release here).
I understand that Cereality wants to protect their interests and that these types of lawsuits are common place in business. But, I reiterate: This may ultimately hurt Cereality more than help them. They may be perceived as bullies, and no one likes bullies. And, in an emerging market it is often helpful to have strong competition, because it increases the public's awareness of the concept, thereby increasing business. As the first, Cereality already has an advantage. And, if they truly provide a superior restaurant experience they should have no fear over their competitors who aren't even in the same cities as this point.
I just don't get it.

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Thursday, March 16, 2006


A sign of aging is if you can remember cereal box top freebies. The Christian Science Monitor has an interesting essay, "How much cereal does a G-Man eat?",  on this aspect of nostalgia.

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Tuesday, March 14, 2006

"Always Saturday Morning BootCamp"

Cereal restaurant Cereality has announced the development of a flagship cafe in Chicago. While these openings are quickly becoming less than news, what caught my attention on this one is the Franchise Training Facility that will be at the same site. The name: "Always Saturday Morning BootCamp(TM)". Read press release here.
That sounds like fun, and could be the key to Cereality's success. They are creating more than just a cereal restaurant; but an experience and a culture that taps into the important role that cereal plays in our society.
Word to Cereality: Please open one near me!


Monday, March 13, 2006

Cereal design

I've focused a lot on the marketing of cereal through boxes and advertising. But, have you ever thought about the design of the cereal itself. You know: flakes, squares, circles, etc.
2wice has a Periodic Breakfast Table, a chart outlining some of the major designs in the cereal itself. The photo isn't very clear, but nevertheless interesting.
It's more than science, it's also an art!

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Friday, March 10, 2006

Battle Creek Cereal Fest

Battle Creek, Michigan is the world's breakfast cereal capitol. That goes without saying.
What you may not know is that the city hosts an annual Cereal Fest, including the World's Longest Breakfast Table. This year will be the 50th Anniversary of the festival, and of course it is Kellogg's 100th Anniversary this year as well. This year Cereal Fest takes place June 8-10th.
Someday I will have to attend!
More information here.


Thursday, March 09, 2006

Hot cereal anyone?

The BBC reports that sales of porridge and oatmeal in the U.K. have nearly doubled in the last five years, well ahead of the growth in cold cereal.
While these numbers do not reflect North American sales, I suspect that there might be an renewed interest in hot cereals here too. Obviously, not overyone can be bothered with cooking their cereal every morning, but among the growing number of health conscious consumers hot cereal certainly carries the perception of being healthier. There are a number of single-serve hot cereal products already available, but I think that with strong marketing there is tremendous growth potential here even beyond what already exists.

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Tuesday, March 07, 2006

Inside Kellogg

A few years ago Kellogg was struggling as a cereal maker, but it appears that in more recent times it is back on track and again asserts its lead in the market. Much of that can be attributed to the good leadership under CEO Jim Jenness.
Here's an article from the Battle Creek Enquirer, "Aggressive but steady sells the cereal", full of some personal insights and quotes from the CEO. Some valuable glimpses into Kellogg's new attitude and approaches.

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Friday, March 03, 2006

Java Flakes

Yet another Cereality copycat. This time in Denton, Texas: Java Flakes. Sorry, no other details available, but it is a sign that this cereal restaurants are a trend that will continue to grow.

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The Cereal Lover's Cookbook

While there have been a number of recipes books published that focus on using cereal (including The Breakfast Cereal Gourmet), another is coming out in May that is worth noting. The Cereal Lover's Cookbook by Lauren Chattman appears to have a wide variety of interesting recipes in a very attractive format. More information here.

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Thursday, March 02, 2006

Cereal box collecting

Cereal box collecting is not one of the most prominent collecting hobbies, there are a number of very dedicated individuals devoted to the memorable boxes that have packaged our beloved cereals over the last 50+ years. As a collector myself, it is fascinating to see people's reactions when they discover my hobby. After an intial laugh, their response changes when they consider the significance of these often over-looked cardboard containers.
The Miami Herald printed a story ("Duluth man collects sweet cereal memories") orginally from the Minneapolis Star Tribune on Robb Berry of Duluth Minnesota. He is one of the most avid collectors with over 4000 boxes, and some spectacular ones at that. An interesting read.

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Wednesday, March 01, 2006

Bloggers and cereal

Noteworthy blog postings on cereal from the last couple of weeks:
Matt Ritchie philosophizes on cereal and cereal companies, plus provides a test for "breakfast cereal fellowship"
a-clouded-mind questions the behavior of some cereal cartoon characters.
Tara Hayes in the Akron Beacon Journal shares memories of Froot Loops and Toucan Sam.
A Philadelphia Story provides a review of Cereality

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