Tuesday, May 29, 2012

ESPN the cereal

This would have been a great April Fools gag, but while the box image is fictitious it is a serious proposal.

Over the past few years I have watched the the ever-unfolding General Mills saga with Wheaties. Its latest attempt to revive the brand, FUEL, just doesn't appear to have worked. And the company as a whole is having some challenges, even with layoffs announced last week.

I am still convinced that a cereal targeted to men is a viable marketing strategy. But, the Wheaties brand doesn't cut it. Here's my proposal: Form a co-branding partnership with ESPN, and you will have a winner! The cable sports network is a major testosterone symbol, and considering the passion of many sports fans who wouldn't dare miss SportsCenter, an ESPN branded cereal would fly off the shelves.

Co-branded cereals are not new, and even General Mills tried something similar with women when they introduced Curves cereal several years ago (although the cereal didn't last that long). But, Curves for women does not even come close to the marketing potential that ESPN would have for men.

I think it would work!