Brands Monkey Around with Curious George DVD Tie-Ins

By Sep 25, 2006

Brand marketers are pulling out all the stops in a new marketing and promotional campaign around Universal Studios Home Entertainment’s upcoming DVD release Curious George.

New partner French’s Potato Sticks will distribute 2.8 million Curious George-themed packages and more than 200,000 Curious George-themed stickers on French’s Potato Sticks’ single server eight multi-pack boxes and promote a national online sweepstakes dangling a trip for four to Universal Studios Hollywood. Online materials and FSIs support. Consumers can enter at FrenchsFoods.com. Fifty first-prize winners will get a Curious George DVD; Lesser prizes include Curious George-themed Mad Libs, games and puzzles. The sweeps runs through June 30, 2007.

Little Debbie will back the effort in 30 million snack packages offering a mail-in rebate for the Curious George DVD, as well as a mail-in offer for movie-themed accessories. Parenting magazine will dangle a full-page advertorial in its October issue offering a sneak peek at the Curious George/Dole interactive game that drives consumers online.

“In today’s marketplace, an average 60% of consumers who purchase a DVD have not previously seen the film in theaters,” said Ken Graffeo, executive VP-marketing for Universal Studios Home Entertainment, in a statement. “In other words, because a brand is missing more than half of a property’s audience if it only participates during the theatrical campaign, taking part in a DVD campaign ensures the greatest awareness.”

Returning partners Carvel, Cold-Eeze, Dole and Langers participated in cross-promotional campaigns for the Curious George theatrical release in February (PROMO Xtra, Feb. 1, 2006).

As part of the DVD tie-in, Carvel will include discount coupons for the Curious George DVD in 500,000 ice cream cakes, promoting the offer in radio spots, FSIs and grocery store static clings. Cold-Eeze will continue to promote its national Curious George sweepstakes in the October issue of Parenting, which offers a trip for four to Universal Studios Theme Park. Consumers can enter at Coldeeze.com. The Quigley Corp., Doylestown, PA, handles. In addition, consumers who buy two Cold-Eeze products can send away for a Curious George-themed backpack.

Langers Juice will brand 2 million of its juices with the Curious George theme and promote the film via FSI and online efforts. Dole will affix Curious George stickers to 100 million bananas and Curious George hangers on 4.5 million pineapples and distribute 10,000 P-O-S displays nationwide.

In addition, Universal Studios Home Entertainment (USHE) also rolled out a two-day casting contest tied to the DVD release, dangling a chance for kids to win a role in an upcoming animated Universal Studios film. USHE visited malls in eight cities over the weekend targeting kids 12 and under with a series of curiosity and creativity events, including games, art projects, face painting. Stops included Salt Lake City, Atlanta, Chicago, Dallas, Houston, Los Angeles, Phoenix and San Francisco.

Entrants registered on site. The first 60 people who registered were videotaped and judged on personality, communication skills, stage presence and overall impression. One participant from each city in October will be named a regional winner and receive a DVD prize pack. A panel of judges narrow down the pool and the regional winner with the highest score will be the grand prize winner. Online materials support.

Curious George is based on Universal Pictures and Imagine Entertainment’s animated film of the same name. The DVD release, set for Sept. 26, details the adventures and misadventures of the loveable monkey and the friends he meets along the way. Universal Studios Home Entertainment is a division of Universal Studios.

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