DiGiorno keeps delivery theme for new promo

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Kraft Foods' DiGiorno Rising Crust frozen pizza rose to the top of its highly competitive set, thanks in part to its long-running campaign-"It's not delivery, it's DiGiorno." Its latest strategy is to tie that brand message to a sales promotion in an effort to keep it No. 1 in the $2.5 billion frozen-pizza segment.

At first, Kraft's promotion for DiGiorno Rising Crust pizza, "Be a DiGiorno Delivery Guy," may seem to contradict the longtime positioning of the brand. But on further inspection, the promotional game-backed by unprecedented levels of ad support for a DiGiorno promotion-actually drives home a message: It offers one winner $100,000 and a Chrysler PT Cruiser not to deliver pizza.

The game, which will appear on more than 10 million DiGiorno packages starting early this month, marks the first time Philip Morris Cos.' Kraft has used dedicated TV and print ads to support a limited-time promotion.

"We think the promotion is so unique, relevant and directly tied in with the message we've been seeding that it offers us a great opportunity to get the message out there to as many folks as possible," said Duane Hart, senior associate brand manager for DiGiorno.

According to one food-industry analyst, Kraft's increased advertising for the promotion likely stems from the fact the brand is a real growth engine. Its pizza division grew from $545 million to nearly $1 billion since DiGiorno's launch.

"In this climate, any area where food companies see growth is going to get more attention and competitiveness. And since Kraft's ad campaign for DiGiorno has done very well, they will continue to be aggressive in extending it to engage the consumer," the analyst said.

Since DiGiorno's 1995 launch, Kraft has used the "Fooler" campaign from True North Commun-ication's FCB Worldwide, Chicago, to show how consumers can get the same high-quality pizza found in restaurants in grocers' freezers. In 2000, Kraft spent $26 million in measured media on the campaign, according to Taylor Nelson Sofres' CMR.

The TV spot supporting the "Be a DiGiorno Delivery Guy" game begins airing April 15. In it, a slacker visits an employment office in response to the great opportunity he saw on a DiGiorno package. The woman behind the counter, clearly annoyed, tells him DiGiorno is not delivered as he begins to enumerate the perks of the "job:" a $100,000 salary, a new 2001 PT Cruiser with navigation system, $1,500 for a cell phone and cellular service, a year's supply of DiGiorno and a customized DiGiorno Delivery Guy uniform. As the woman goes gaga over the slacker's new uniform (which he magically changes into) a voice-over notes all the prizes can go to one lucky customer just for calling the toll-free number listed inside specially marked boxes.

A print ad touting the promotion will break in April and May issues of Time Inc.'s People magazine. It features a large help-wanted ad for the DiGiorno Delivery Guy and reads, "You can win $100,000 salary to do nothing!!!" An April 22 newspaper insert also will tout the promotion. In addition to the grand prize, Kraft will give away thousands of DiGiorno pizzas and 500 cash "tips" of $100 each.

DiGiorno leads the frozen pizza segment, with sales up 6.8% to $348 million for the 52 weeks ended Feb. 25, per Information Resources Inc. Kraft, which has a 37% share of frozen pizza with its DiGiorno, Tombstone and Jack's brands, filed suit against No. 2 competitor Schwan's Sales Enterprises, alleging the company improperly obtained confidential information about Kraft's products. Under its Tony's Pizza Service division, Schwan's introduced its own rising-crust pizza brand, Freschetta, shortly after DiGiorno's launch. Freschetta sales grew 8.5% to $180 million for the year ended Feb. 25.

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