Marinela Dangles Vid Game

Looks to hook both kids and retailers

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%%STORYIMAGE_RIGHT%% In an attempt to spark new trial among its 6-12-year-old target audience as well as generate interest among the trade for shelf space, Bimbo Bakeries USA has rolled out a successful CD-ROM video game for its Marinela Gansito snack cake brand.

The brand, considered to have comparable brand recognition and iconic appeal in Mexico as the Hostess Twinkie has stateside, is targeting increased traction among the fast-growing Mexican-American population in the U.S.

Marinela hired New York-based Media Designs/Brand Games, which created "Gansito and Friends in the World of Adventure," a free CD-ROM interactive game, in both Spanish and English, that was distributed with a 10-count package of Marinela Gansito snack cakes. The promotion, which began in February, has been so successful that it was halted early with 400,000 units sold.

"One of the main marketing challenges for us was to gain not only more consumers, but also new consumers," said Juan Esaa, the Marinela U.S. Brand Manager. "We researched the type of item today's children enjoy. Video games are at the top of the list."%%PULLQUOTE_LEFT%%

According to Jim Wexler, Brand Games' exec VP-marketing, Gansito, a duck, is the equivalent of Ronald McDonald in Mexico. "He's lively, irreverent, fun, mischievous and adventurous. He had the makings of a good video game [character]."

Hispanics are the fastest-growing segment of the U.S. population, representing nearly half of the overall population growth. The current Hispanic count in this country of 35 million plus is expected to balloon to more than 46 million by 2015.

Grupo Bimbo, which entered the U.S. in 1998, has marketing and distribution rights to the Entenmann's, Thomas, and Boboli brands in the western United States.

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