Frito, Disney plan one-two punch promos

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PepsiCo's Frito-Lay snack food unit is counting on a dinosaur raised by lemurs to boost summer sales.

Frito has signed on with Walt Disney Co. for back-to-back promotions it hopes will build its share of the salty snack market during the crucial warm weather months.

First, the snack behemoth will tie its Lay's potato chip brand to the May 19 release of Disney's new "Dinosaur" movie. Then, around July 4, Frito will link with cable network Toon Disney for a promotion that will include several family-targeted chip brands.


Though Frito has an ongoing deal with Warner Bros.' Looney Tunes and has tied in previously with Disney films, including "Toy Story," "it is definitely groundbreaking to do two promotions back-to-back the same summer," said an executive close to the company. The reason, he said, is mainly to build in-store impact of its chip displays for summertime snacking. "Disney means fun, kids and summertime events, and so does Frito-Lay," he said.

Around "Dinosaur," a combination live-action/computer animated film about why dinosaurs became extinct, Frito will alter graphics on Lay's potato chips packages to reflect graphics of the film. The film's main character, Aladar (the dinosaur raised by lemurs), will be featured front and center on packaging.

The phrase "Please feed the CHIPasarus" will be featured on packages as well as extensive point-of-purchase materials.

Frito has eschewed major media expenditures, relying instead on Disney's support behind the megahyped film release.

The second part of the dual-Disney effort is a sweepstakes promotion dubbed "Magic in a Bag" that centers around programming from Toon Disney. Select bags of Cheetos, Doritos 3D's, Fritos and Ruffles will carry game pieces offering cash and prizes -- including posters and plush toys -- based on Disney cartoons.


Frito will run spots during Toon Disney programming to promote the prize giveaways and will tout the "Magic in a Bag" theme on packages of the four brands and prominently in point-of-purchase materials. BBDO Worldwide, New York, handles advertising for the brands involved in the promotion.

Frito-Lay spent $90 million in measured media behind its chips and snack brands during the first 11 months of 1999, according to Competitive Media Reporting.

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