In pursuit of justice – and munchies

Marvel Comic's Wolverine, Spiderman, Incredible Hulk and gang are doing everything in their collective superpowers to promote Hostess chips via 'Superhero Mania,' a multi-pronged effort with Teletoon as the TV partner. The promotion entails 75,000 limited edition collector's copies of a...

Marvel Comic’s Wolverine, Spiderman, Incredible Hulk and gang are doing everything in their collective superpowers to promote Hostess chips via ‘Superhero Mania,’ a multi-pronged effort with Teletoon as the TV partner. The promotion entails 75,000 limited edition collector’s copies of a first-ever Superhero comic book Wolverine, Son of Canada and $120,000 in prizes to be won on www.superhero.ca between May 7 and June 4.

Teletoon VP of marketing and promotions Hillary Firestone says: ‘We talk a lot these days about trying to have a presence in a bigger, broader way, and trying to reach out to consumers in more than one medium – I think that this does a great job in doing that. Every communication has a centralized theme to it.’

That theme – superheroes – happens to be very popular with the target 12 to17 demo.

‘Its all about superheroes, so it was a perfect fit when Hostess came to us because we have a lot of superhero programming – Marvel superhero specifically – in the core of the promotion.’

Firestone notes that they are going after more of a teen base because these superheroes are making a big comeback with the X-Men and Spiderman movies that are both due to be released this summer,’ she says.

And Hostess is definitely on the same page: ‘Every summer we do a corporate promo, two years ago we did Star Wars, last year we did The Simpsons, this year we teamed up with Marvel,’ says David Colebrook marketing manager at Hostess Frito Lay.

‘The key for us is massive in-store displays, so what we’ve done is leveraged the characters to create what we call in-store theatre.

Promotional spots will be heard on every number-one station in every major market. All this will be done in conjunction with a big Web promotion: $120,000 worth of prizing – daily prizes, games of chance and a grand-prize draw a trip for a family of four to Universal Studios’ ‘Islands of Adventure,’ in Orlando, Florida.

Colebrook says that ‘Superhero Mania’ is bigger than this spring’s Doritos/Survivor promo that boosted company sales by five share points. He predicts higher sales, attributed in part to the fact that there are more point-of-purchase materials.