Eye On Marketers

Marketing has a profound affect on the foods we eat and the beverages we drink, yet most of that marketing is for products we should avoid. BMSG monitors the media to help keep advocates informed of the tactics food and beverage companies use to target children, communities of color, and other groups that are particularly susceptible to the health harms these products cause.
Source: Ad Age
Sunday, April 13, 2014

To promote their new Spicy Chicken Cool Ranch Doritos Locos Tacos, Taco Bell is partnering with the popular mobile app SnapChat. The app will feature a short film featuring the new product and will be launched in conjunction with television, radio, and other social media promotion. The marketing tactic is another example of Big Food turning to the latest in technology to push unhealthy products on young, tech savvy consumers.

Source: PR Newswire
Wednesday, April 9, 2014

The new bilingual app Veo was specifically developed for brands like General Mills and Daisy to to target Latinos with coupons, giveaways, and other offers through their smart phones. According to one of the app's developers: "Among Hispanics, shopping and couponing apps rank second, only to social media." Given a recent article on how coupons advertise unhealthy foods, this is likely to not be good news for Latino health.

Source: New York Times
Monday, April 7, 2014

Vita Coco, a leading maker of coconut water, is partnering with the upcoming animated film Rio 2 to launch two new flavors of the Vita Coco Kids line. The new flavors are named after characters in the popular children's movie and will be promoted using digital, print, social media, and in-store advertisements. While the adult-targeted products in the Vita Coco line are made with 100% juice, the children's products are made with only 50% juice and have added sugar.

Source: FoodBev.com
Friday, April 4, 2014

Beechdean Ice Cream Group, the UK's largest farm-based ice cream maker, is launching a new Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle-branded ice cream popsicle. The "X-Treme Lime and Chocolate Ice Lolly" capitalizes on the ongoing popularity of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, who will be featured in a high profile movie later this year.

Source: Gnomes National News Service
Thursday, April 3, 2014

The competition asks fashion design students at historically black colleges to create designs inspired by the McCafe brand and offers prestigious apprenticeships and scholarships as prizes. According to a McDonald's spokesperson, "McCafe beverages are the perfect complement for aspiring designers as they work tirelessly to pursue their dreams."

Source: LA Weekly
Thursday, April 3, 2014

A recent study of 65 cereals indicates that cereals marketed to children are strategically placed at children's eye level on grocery store shelves - and that spokes-characters on child-targeted cereal boxes are positioned to have eye contact with children. A follow-up study indicates that eye contact with branded spokes-characters helps marketers build brand loyalty and trust among children.

Source: 365 Black
Wednesday, April 2, 2014

April 2nd marks McDonald's 13th Annual Girls and 37th Annual Boys All American Game, an all-star high school basketball game saturated with the McDonald's brand. According to McDonald's, the game "gives student athletes an opportunity to introduce themselves to the basketball world" and "gives back to the community as well." Past All-American Gamers include African American basketball star LeBron James, who is now sponsored by the fast food giant.

Source: Aljazeera America
Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Yale researcher Robin Masheb dismantles the myth that General Mils' Box Tops for Education program is "either philanthropic [or] benign," concluding that the child and parent-directed program "produces just the type of behavior that General Mills needs in order to build brand loyalty and increase sales of its products."

Source: Ad Week
Thursday, March 27, 2014

In a "tribute from Kit Kat to Lego, builders of one of the best breaks ever," Nestle's Kit Kat brand developed an unofficial Lego set that features a giant candy bar with Lego people hidden inside the bars of plastic chocolate. The brand-saturated product, while not officially affiliated with Lego, will be sold in toy stores by Kit Kat in the near future.

Source: ReachHispanic.com
Wednesday, March 26, 2014

The Dallas-based pizza chain who regularly targets Latino consumers with their tagline "Ms pizza. Menos dinero." launched a new item whose controversial name "La Chingona" aims to appeal to younger Mexican-Americans. Older Mexican-Americans, however, have reportedly found the Mexican slang word vulgar and "cringe at its use." According to the article, this is not the first time the chain has used cultural controversy to sell pizza.

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