Food Network, Kellogg’s Serve Up Integrated Alliance

Food Network and Kellogg’s are encouraging consumers to think outside the cereal box, pairing up for an integrated partnership that will look to demonstrate the versatility of the Battle Creek breakfast giant’s brands.

Expanding on an execution that saw six Kellogg’s brands get served up on the July 25 installment of The Next Food Network Star, the new integration pact will roll out in the fourth quarter of 2010. In that particular episode (the seventh of season six), Food Network personality Melissa d’Arabian challenged TNFNS contestants to whip up an entree that included one of the Kellogg’s cereals as an integral element of the recipe.

The six brands––Rice Krispies, All-Bran, Corn Flakes, Crispix, Cocoa Krispies and Froot Loops––were displayed during the ingredient “reveal” and throughout the 30-minute prep time. The challenge helped illustrate Kellogg’s main thrust, which is that cereal needn’t be limited to the breakfast bowl.

Per terms of the Q4 deal, Kellogg’s brands will be featured in short-form creative to appear on Food Network and In each interstitial, d’Arabian will demonstrate how to add texture and flavor to entrees and appetizers by adding Kellogg’s cereal to the mix.

The branded creative will run in A positions across the Food Network lineup.

D’Arabian won season five of TNFNS and is the host of Food Network’s daytime cooking program, Ten Dollar Dinners with Melissa d’Arabian.
Along with the on-air integration, Kellogg’s will also be featured in the October issue of Food Network magazine. The one-page advertisement features a photo of d’Arabian in her kitchen and offers readers tips on how to enhance the flavor of their home-cooked meals with an assist from Kellogg’s. For example, Corn Flakes can be used as a substitute for traditional breadcrumbs, while All-Bran is a sound base for a chicken roulade stuffing.

A tune-in at the bottom right hand corner of the ad reminds readers to tune in to Ten Dollar Dinners Sundays at 12:30 p.m. The Hearst consumer pub boasts a circulation base of 1.25 million.

Food Network will also be the beneficiary of a reciprocal marketing boost targeting the nation’s grocery stores. In October, Kellogg’s will enhance as many as 20 million boxes of its cereal brands with a back-panel sweepstakes ad touting a $25,000 kitchen makeover grand prize.  

D’Arabian’s recipe for All-Bran chicken roulades will also run on the panels, alongside her photo, the Food Network logo and a Ten Dollar Dinners tune-in.

Kellogg’s original TNFNS integration was seen by a large audience, as the July 25 episode drew 3.48 million viewers in its Sunday 9 p.m. time slot. Of these, more than half were members of the 25-54 demo (1.99 million).

Perhaps more importantly, the placement helped boost Kellogg’s Food Net profile significantly. Per Nielsen IAG data, 93 percent of adults 18-49 surveyed could recall the brand after viewing the episode. That’s up from the 32 percent brand recall that is the norm for Kellogg’s across the cable universe.

Much of the positive results can be credited to the cooperation between the network, client and Starcom MediaVest Group’s content unit, Liquid Thread. “Integration is never simply a matter of just sticking a box somewhere on the set and hoping the viewer will take notice of it,” said Karen Grinthal, senior vp ad sales Food Network & Cooking Channel. “For these executions to work the integration really has to contribute to making the program itself even more compelling.”

Grinthal said that while the Kellogg’s deal will run through Q4, both parties remain in conversation as to what the cereal giant has planned for next year. “Our conversations with our partners don’t stop,” Grinthal said.
In its Q2 earnings call (July 29), Kellogg’s president AD David MacKay told investors the company would “continue to invest in our business through increased advertising,” adding that its investment in ad spend for the full year 2010 would grow “in the mid-single-digit range” versus the year-ago period.

Kellogg’s spent $856.7 million on advertising in 2009, per Kantar Media, up 4.4 percent from the prior year. Nearly half (48 percent) of that overall outlay was devoted to television ($409.2 million).