The multimedia hip-hop personality is appearing in a WRFF(pronounced "riff") commercial, breaking in June, directed by Hype Williams. Salton also plans to release a customized line of Snoop WRFFs by Christmas.
"Our whole strategy is urban to suburban. We're saying that as a kid , if you BMX or skateboard, you're gonna like WRFF too. It's extreme and different so we wanted to go with this hip-hop approach," said John Howell, WRFF Marketing Manager at Salton. The core target market for WRFF is kids 12-16 years-old. The product will retail between $150-300.
The relationship was originally struck when Salton came on board as the title sponsor of Project Revolution, a tour this summer with Linkin Park, Korn and Snoop Dogg. "The reason we did this is that Snoop really wants to be in a bigger business with the Salton folks. Their track record with George Foreman is enticing," said Constance Schwartz, VP-strategic marketing for The Firm, Snoop's management company. "We took a reduced rate so that we could have equity with possible royalties."
%%PULLQUOTE_LEFT%% In fact Snoop and his team at The Firm are so enamored of the back-end possibilities that were reaped with the George Foreman blueprint that they've initiated discussions with Salton on the idea of a Snoop Dogg barbecue grill. Howell said he'll see how well Snoop is received in the advertising before exploring any further partnerships.
Snoop has a busy summer ahead of him. Not only is he starring in the feature film, "Starsky & Hutch", but "213," a CD marking the collaboration of Nate Dogg, Warren G. and Snoop drops in July, followed by his solo record in October. Snoop also has a fall TV project that he's prepping for MTV with the working title "Coach Snoop." It's a reality-show concept about the youth football team he coaches. Schwartz thinks the show would be an ideal product integration opportunity for WRFF.
This collaboration between hip-hop and corporate America follows the path tread by Heineken with Jay-Zee and The Gap with Missy Elliott.