L/C Targets Tweens for Ice Cream Chain

NEW YORK Friendly Ice Cream will tap into the fascination tweens have for extreme sports with the summer launch of its first kid-centric ice cream, Team Xtreme, to be backed with print, Web banner ads and grass-roots marketing.

The four-SKU line — with “extreme” names and flavors Chocolate Mud Chunkers, Half Pipe Kookie Dough Swirl, Pink Kahuna Cooler and Big Air P.B. Cookie Dough — come in 1.75-quart packages that each sport graphics, via Lam Design in New York, of activities popular with kids: BMX, snowboarding, surfing and skateboarding, respectively.

“Friendly’s is a brand that’s clearly tied with families and kids,” said LeeAnn Marano, retail brand manager. “We were really excited . . . that 75 percent of kids we tested thought that Team Xtreme is better than the ice cream their moms buy today.”

The line is available at retailers and at 540 Friendly’s restaurants and franchises.

Based in Wilbraham, Mass., Friendly’s will support the launch with print via independent Laughlin/Constable, Chicago, in July and August in Sports Illustrated for Kids. The tagline is “Rock your taste buds.” The ad budget was not disclosed.

On tap: Banner ads on kid-friendly Web sites. Sampling vans will head to action-sports venues such as Great Adventure in New Jersey.

“The final packaging featured wacky activities associated with extreme sports,” said Michael Lafortessa, Lam president. “[In tests], kids really felt as though we were speaking directly to them.”