SALINAS, Calif. -- Jim Henson Productions, Los Angeles, teamed up in-store with Dole Fresh Vegetables here to promote fresh-cut prepackaged salads and the movie, "Muppet Treasure Island."
Shoppers in select markets had the chance to win a trip to Walt Disney World in Orlando, Fla. They could enter a sweepstakes available through in-store tearpads or via a freestanding insert published in February and circulated to more than 20 million households. The full-page insert included cents-off coupons for Dole salads. The promotion period began Feb. 16 with the national release of the latest Muppet movie and ran through the end of March.
"The purpose of this promotion is to stimulate trial of Dole salads by offering consumers an added attraction toward purchase," said Kelley Maier, vice president of marketing, Dole Fresh Vegetables, a division of Dole Food Co., Westlake Village, Calif. The salad packages featured special "Muppet Treasure Island" graphics. Hundreds of specially marked packages of Dole Classic salads contained an in-pack instant win prize notification, awarding such prizes as a "Muppet Treasure Island" Kermit plush doll or free Dole salad coupon. In-pack prizes were awarded through March 16. In-store materials were made available to retailers, including sweepstakes tearpads, danglers and header cards for the prepackaged salad section of the produce department. Another division of Dole Foods, Dole's Fresh Fruit, also participated during the same time period, with stickers featuring four different collectible "Muppet Treasure Island" stickers on up to 300 million clusters of Dole bananas. A sweepstakes for the trade based on cases of bananas ordered and a display contest for store managers was also part of the program. Dole's Fresh Fruit division also partnered with Minneapolis-based General Mills and its Cheerios cereal with joint displays in the produce aisle of the cereal with bananas, offering an instant coupon worth up to 75 cents of free bananas with the purchase of a box of Cheerios. As of mid-March, Dole had received positive responses from the trade regarding this promotion, according to Amy McDougall, marketing manager for Dole Fresh Vegetables.
"What our branded items have done is bring in a big promotion like this to the produce department," she said. "I don't believe there has ever been a movie tie-in for the produce department."