I’ll sometimes set out a suit, tie, shirt and shoes the night before a big new business presentation. And, I’ll most certainly pack my luggage the night before any sort of trip. But, I’ve never, ever set out my cereal for breakfast the night before I tuck in for bed.
I raise this seemingly absurd point because the fine folks at Kellogg’s and their agency partners, Leo Burnett, believe they can encourage consumers to eat more of their cereal by doing just that: leaving the box out the night before.
They’ve also decided to take a completely different strategic approach by running TV commericals at night and to romaticize Raisin Bran, Special K and Mini Wheats. Imagine that. The Burnett people went so far as to say, “We wanted to grab people by the lapels to get them to recognize that cereal is a beautiful thing, and that when it mixes with milk, something magical happens.” Really? What, exactly?
Sorry, but cereal is cereal is cereal. I, for one, see it as a food staple that is, hopefully, both tasty and somewhat nutritious. But:
– You’ll never get me to set it out the night before
– You’ll never, ever get me to associate it with beauty.
Sunsets are beautiful. Scanning the horion in all directions from a 14,000-ft mountain is beautiful. A box of Mini Wheats sitting astride my kitchen counter as the clock strikes midnight isn’t beautiful.
I’m sure this campaign is based on extensive research, and the insights gleaned from it. And, I’d love to know how many people Kellogg’s thinks will actually take the time to set out their cereal their cereal box the night before because it will make them feel more empowered to conquer the next day.
Oh, I almost forgot to mention that empowerment is the brand promise (“A magic formula of protein that helps turn little boys into soccer players and moms into supermoms.”). And, the TV spots conclude with a voice-over proclaiming, “Tomorrow is yours to claim, set yourself with Kellogg’s tonight.” And the tagline is, “See you at breakfast.” Does anyone believe cereal alone can accomplish all those things?
Methinks this is one campaign that is all wet. Or should I say soggy?
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Totally agree, Matt. But, the cereal industry is, indeed, desperate. As the Times article points out 90 percent of Americans eat cereal, they just don’t eat it everyday. I don’t see the Kellogg’s “See you at breakfast campaign” changing those numbers one bit.
I knew the cereal industry was in trouble but didn’t know just how desperate they were until now. How about making the product better and more relevant to what people want to eat today instead of simply making it obnoxious. I guess the research told them, ‘out of sight, out of mind’ and some hack creative team decided shoving an ugly box in people’s faces before bedtime would be just the reminder they need. Or, they could have realized the box actually has more nutrition than the diabetes causing bowl of sugar they’ll get out of it. Hey, this could actually work – just eat the box, at least you’ll get some roughage out to it.