This month, boxes of Cheerios will include a free copy of a children’s book as the packaged goods marketer continues its reading program.
The book, The Best Friends Book, comes wrapped with a Cheerios double pack. Shoppers also receive a coupon for $2 off any children’s book sold at Target, a bookmark and a crossword puzzle game created by the author Todd Parr. Parr is an illustrator and author of 20 children’s books. The packages hit store shelves April 11.
The Spoonfuls of Stories program was created to support children and reading. Cheerios has donated $1 million to support First Book, a national nonprofit organization that helps get books in the hands of needy children. Donation forms and information about First Book will be included in the double pack and on Cheerios.com.
Cheerios has weathered a number of challenges to get the promoted books into children’s hands.
It started by offering titles via a mail-in offer, but discovered consumers preferred to get the book when they purchased. So in November 2002 it began offering free in-pack books, but the books were hidden inside with no indication which of the line of five books was being offered. Consumers said they had trouble collecting all five. Last year, Cheerios revamped the box design so shoppers could see the book inside and is now running its third promo, a spokesperson said.