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Kraft Keeps 'Cheddar Explosion' Going Online

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Kraft Foods wants to keep the “boom” going on its new, Macaroni ‘N Cheese Dinner Cheddar Explosion product with a new social media effort launching this week.
 
Macaroni ‘N Cheese Dinner Cheddar Explosion is Kraft's first sub-line in many years. The product is being promoted via a campaign, which kicked off with a highly televised event. The food giant selected 11-year-old Casey Rogers of Terrell, Texas, following an essay contest, to implode the Texas Stadium—former home of the Dallas Cowboys—as part of a previously arranged sponsorship agreement with the Irving City Council.

Now, Kraft is banking on social media to capitalize on the buzz generated from Sunday’s implosion. “Boom To Reverberate,” as the effort is called, includes elements like a video running on YouTube.com, Facebook.com and Nick.com, Nickelodeon’s home page. The video features ESPN’s Chris Berman (as the voiceover), counting down the minutes to the stadium’s implosion. (The sportscaster’s nickname, coincidentally, is “Boomer.”)

Kraft also tapped YouTube sensation KevJumba, a Taiwanese-American whose real name is Kevin Wu, to tout the product. Wu attended the implosion event with his dad. The video shows Wu—standing yards away—playfully pressing down on a giant purple button to detonate the stadium.

By reaching out to social media celebrities like KevJumba, Kraft is tapping into its fan base. Wu, for instance, has 73,120 followers on Twitter, and that same video, posted on his Facebook page, got 180,000 views in the first 24 hours, Kraft said.

Additionally, Macaroni ‘N Cheese Dinner Cheddar Explosion will be featured in print and TV ads, which are scheduled for early next month. The Chicago office of Draftfcb handled creative duties. Razorfish and Digitas handled digital work, Bridges oversaw video production, and Hunter Public Relations worked on PR and event planning.

As of press time, media specifics weren't finalized yet, but Kraft Macaroni ‘N Cheese senior brand manager Eileen Sharkey Rosenfeld said the ads will likely focus on the “attributes of the new product. It’s a bigger blast of cheese, and we’re celebrating that in a very fun way,” Rosenfeld said.

Kraft, which is scheduled to report earnings next month, said it’s pleased with the amount of buzz it has generated for the product so far. Following a coupon drop and Sunday’s implosion, the brand—which had just set up a Facebook page in March—saw its fan base jump from 40,000 to nearly 200,000.

“The buzz has been phenomenal," said Rosenfeld. "We wanted to make sure that coming out of the Texas Stadium event, we had even more excitement to launch our new products after that moment."