Tuesday, April 29, 2008

A new angle

Sometimes all a cereal brand needs is a new angle.

A stalwart cereal in Canada (and several other countries) is Shreddies, a malt-flavored, whole-wheat square. Post, recognizing that a brand make-over was needed, last year obtained the services of Ogilvy Toronto to develop a creative marketing campaign centered around a fake relaunch of the cereal. Instead of Shreddies as squares, they are now diamonds. The result is new attention and energy for a cereal that had lost much of its luster from 30-40 years ago.

Some links worth noting:

Ogilvy Toronto's marketing of Shreddies

Globe and Mail story of a man who listed one of the "last square Shreddies" on ebay.

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Monday, April 21, 2008

More on Archer Farms

A few weeks ago I reported on the new cereal packaging innovation being launched at Target with their Archer Farms house brand.

Visiting my local Target today I am even more impressed seeing the new cereals on the shelf. They look great, and stand out from the usual boxes of the other brands. The unique shape, the lack of inner bags, the plastic flip top, the attractive overall design, and appealing recipes make for a premium brand in its own right.

My question is: Why can't the big cereal companies come up with innovation like this?

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Friday, April 18, 2008

Cheerios beyond the bowl

Have you noticed how almost all cereal boxes on the front feature a picture of bowl with its cereal? Sure, the box contains what's depicted, but is it always necessary?

General Mills has introduced a new design for its flagship Cheerios line, and there's no bowl! Instead are an attractive assortment of O's, strongly reinforcing an already strong brand. It's a sharp look that will make Cheerios stand out on the grocer's shelf.

It's time for some other cereals to sport a new look!

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Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Kellogg's streetwear

In the end is it cereal they sell or brands?

Survival and profit in today's competitive market requires the latter.

Licensing their brands with other consumer good is not new for cereal companies. They've been doing it for a long time. And, getting people to "wear" your brand is probably the highest form of brand exposure as it backs the product with a level of endorsement. It is not hard to find cereal brands highlighted on such items as T-shirts.

But, most of the branded goods reek of blatant commericalism or kitsch. But, Kellogg may have found a way to tap into a new market by licensing its brands to "Under the Hood", a new clothing line geared to the younger crowd obsessed with urban fashion.

Pretty impressive stuff, and with tremendous potential to raise Kellogg's profile within a brand-fickle generation.


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Saturday, April 12, 2008

Cereal haikus

Looking for some cereal fun?

TimeOut New York has an interactive, online quiz featuring 12 haikus. The goal is to identify the breakfast cereal indicated by each of the 17-syllable poems.

Good luck!


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Wednesday, April 09, 2008

Cereal colonialism

What do you when you have saturated your market?

Look for new markets.

Breakfast cereal has been a food staple in North America for well over a century, and has been gradually making it's way into other markets like Europe, and more recently Asia. But, recent stories in Business Daily Africa (#1, #2) indicate that, based on experience in Kenya, the expansive continent of Africa may be the next frontier for cereal companies. Economic and cultural barriers are big challenges, but who knows, maybe cereal will someday be a truly universal food.

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Tuesday, April 08, 2008

Malt-O-Meal recall

I've been away and haven't blogged here for a couple of weeks. But, now that I'm back...
Here's something you don't normally associate with breakfast cereal: A product recall.

Discount and private-label cereal manufacturer, Malt-O-Meal, announced that is voluntarily recalling certain lots of its unsweetened Puffed Rice and Puffed Wheat cereals because of the possibility of Salmonella contamination. This recall affects its own brand and those under the labels of Acme, America's Choice, Food Club, Giant, Hannaford, Jewel, Laura Lynn, Pathmark, Shaw's, ShopRite, Tops and Weis Quality.

Detailed information is available on the company's website.

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