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Kraft Takes Philly Marketing Beyond Refrigerated Aisle with Paid eBook

By Dec 17, 2010

Kraft Foods has taken a further step into the realm of charging for brand-related content with the release in eBook form of a new collection of recipes for its Philadelphia Cream Cheese brand. The book is now available for $9.99 on iTunes as a download for the iPad, iPhone and iTouch devices, and on Amazon.com as a download to the Kindle reader for the same price.

“Spread a Little Joy” was originally meant as a way to spread the Philly in-store marketing effort beyond the refrigerated section, says brand manager Adam Butler, and was visualized as a standard paper publishing effort.

“When we moved to a cooking strategy [for Philly], a cookbook naturally seemed to make sense, and we figured we could have our retailer partners set up displays and get some incremental awareness in stores to help drive volume,” Butler says. “But we’re also spending a lot of resources going digital, because that’s where cooks are finding and sharing recipes. So it was natural to say that if we have a cookbook, we should make it available digitally.”

Kraft tasked agency 360i with plotting a digital path for the cookbook, and the agency brought in Skyrockit, a Bellrock Media division with a turnkey platform for digitizing published content. Within a few weeks of opting for the Skyrockit platform, the already-prepared cookbook was in eBook form and ready for inclusion in the iTunes and Amazon inventories.

The book is also available in paperback from Amazon and in selected grocery stores nationwide, for the same $10 price point.

While it comes from Kraft, “Spread a Little Joy” is lightly branded, Butler says. While all 70 of the recipes call for using Kraft Philadelphia Cream Cheese, the brand’s logo doesn’t appear on the cover.

“It’s one thing to sell a book in grocery stores or to give it away with a purchase of cream cheese. But we wanted to convey that we’re offering something of real value here, so the photography is very professional and the look, while consistent with our look and feel, is very high-end. Ultimately we want to get more cream cheese recipes into people’s hands. If we can do that digitally by having people download the book, then that’s also a win.”

While offering the book in-store could drive sales volume, Butler says Philly is gambling that making the book available as a download—a lower barrier to action that driving to a store—will ultimately result in a greater lifetime value for the brand by getting more cooks working with cream cheese.

Kraft has been one of the brands pioneering paid, branded digital content. Its
iFood Assistant shopping/ recipe app costs 99 cents on iTunes and has been one of the most downloaded apps in the Lifestyle category. The company also offers a “light” version of the app for free, and
an iPad app about family cooking and nutrition called “Big Fork, Little Fork”, also for free.