Thinking Outside the Lunchbox

Wholly Guacamole, America ’s top-selling brand of pre-made guacamole, was looking to spice things up like a jalapeno pepper.

Last summer they sent “Boring Lunch Survival Kits” to promote the brand’s 100-calorie snack packs as a back-to-school lunch idea. “This was the first big event we’ve done highlighting the snack packs,” which have been on the market for a couple of years, says Jennifer Sawyer, Wholly Guacamole marketing manager. “We wanted to refresh brand awareness for moms looking for alternatives for their kids’ lunches as an option for sneaking good food into kids’ bellies.”

The survival kits were meant to highlight the versatility of the guacamole snack packs, which encourage consumers to “Dip It, Top It, Spread It, Love It.” The packs freeze well, defrost easily and are great as a spread on sandwiches or a dip with veggies and chips, Sawyer explains.

Wholly Guacamole overnighted about 500 metal retro lunchbox kits with cold packs to trade and consumer media and bloggers. The back of the lunchbox was a dry-erase board, which contained the message, “Out To Lunch, Be Back at _____________.” The lunchbox contained a dry-erase marker, two varieties of 100-calorie snack packs, an avocado shaped squeeze ball, branded chip clip and coupons.

The lunchbox theme was a natural fit with lunch, says Sawyer. “We’re big believers in making an immediate impact,” she says. “We have people that still talk about the avocado-shaped coolers we sent out three years ago.”

An editor recently told Sawyer that she keeps the cooler on her desk and decorates it with the seasons and for holidays. “We wanted that kind of impact with the lunchbox. We hope people will display it on a long-term basis,” she says.

Wholly Guacamole got great feedback from the promotion. Some requested additional samples, and suggested additional media and bloggers to send kits to. Bloggers posted pictures of the lunchboxes on their sites, and Wholly Guacamole gave some away on Facebook. “Bloggers are important in getting across our brand messages to moms,” says Sawyer. “Prizes are important in delivering a brand message, and we take it seriously. Promotional goods are way more strategic than some people give them credit for. It’s about impact.

“We have been a leader in our category for the past 10 years, and promotional products are tools that help generate interest and create intrigue about our brand,” she adds. “It’s a way to interrupt people in their day, and gives us 5, 10, 15 more minutes than we’d get with conventional ads.”


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