Globe delivers cereal goods

In january, The Globe and Mail served coffee. In September came the breakfast cereal.And the next product to be delivered with the newspaper will probably be along soon.Martha Torrance-Stevenson, account manager, national advertising at the Globe, says her department is working...

In january, The Globe and Mail served coffee. In September came the breakfast cereal.

And the next product to be delivered with the newspaper will probably be along soon.

Martha Torrance-Stevenson, account manager, national advertising at the Globe, says her department is working on a variety of deals similar to the one for Harvest Crunch Light Blend cereal and Maxwell House filter packet coffee.

On Sept. 19, 450-gram boxes of Harvest Crunch Light Blend cereal were delivered to 160,000 home delivery subscribers to the weekend edition of the Globe. The retail price of the cereal was more than $3.

Janet Reesor, product manager for ready-to-eat cereals at the Quaker Oats Company of Canada in Peterborough, Ont., says her company used the Globe as a delivery vehicle to generate awareness and trial of the cereal.

Last January, Maxwell House used a Friday issue of the Globe to deliver samples of its new filter packet coffee to 133,000 subscribers, Torrance-Stevenson says.

Reesor says Light Blend, which has half the amount of fat found in regular Harvest Crunch, was launched in February but had not received much support until the Sept. 19 drop.

She says the Globe-Light Blend pairing worked because it reached subscribers on a weekend when they were unlikely to be rushing off to work and so had time to try the cereal and read the box it came in.

As well, Reesor says the drop was ‘a really great demographic fit,’ adding Globe readers tend to be urban, with higher incomes and levels of education.

She says that for those Globe readers who do not have a subscription, Quaker included a 60-cent-off coupon with its ad for Light Blend in the Sept. 21 paper.

According to Reesor, there are also other sampling ventures and coupons in the works for the cereal, although she will not disclose them.

And the company is not finished there, either, Reesor says.

Quaker has two 30-second tv spots – one English national, one French for Quebec – for Light Blend that went on the air Sept. 21 to support the cereal.

The spots come from Quaker agency Ogilvy and Mather.

Torrance-Stevenson says the Globe used its ‘rain bags’ to deliver the paper and the box of Light Blend.

She says the bags are used in inclement weather and on this occasion they were printed with the Harvest Crunch logo.

Valerie Bell, president and owner of Valerie Bell and Associates in Toronto, one of Quaker’s promotions agencies that specializes in health and nutrition, says the Light Blend drop took five months to develop.

Bell says Quaker selected the Globe as the best match for its product.

She says the company considered another half-dozen delivery options, including other publications she declined to name.

As well as the Globe, Quaker has used a couple of other non-traditional sampling vehicles for its cereals.

Reesor says earlier this year, the Pizza Pizza chain in Ontario delivered either a 400- or 450-gram box of Harvest Crunch, Corn Bran, Oat Squares or Life cereal to anyone who ordered pizza.

In Western Canada, Reesor says Mohawk gas stations gave away samples of cereal to anyone who pulled in. Both sample trials lasted two months.

Torrance-Stevenson says although it is early yet to assess the success of the cereal delivery, a telemarketing survey by the Globe done after the Light Blend sampling showed ‘the results are very good.’

Reesor concurs. She says the quantative response to the Light Blend delivery has been ‘very positive.’