Food Advertising Creative Embraces Stunt and Event Marketing


Brands from CPG to QSR are increasingly engaging consumers tuning out conventional advertising through fun stunt marketing and live events. It’s a great way to create a buzz about a brand through more organic means, such as free exposure via news media. To see what we’re talking about, read on.

As always, a video version of this blog is also available for your viewing pleasure.

Steak-umm – Beef Sheets

In the CPG category, Steak-umm thin-sliced frozen steaks currently offer a line of beef-themed bed sheets. To sell them, they’ve created the site, where consumers can also view a tongue-in-cheek informercial-style video about the product. The spot also manages to take a few humorous swipes at vegans and other potential “beef-curious” types. When the video finally cuts, its true purpose is revealed. “Do these things actually sell?” asks one of the actors. “It’s a marketing stunt. It doesn’t actually matter,” another replies.

Velveeta – Cheese Scented Nail Polish

What is it about cheese promos that always seem so… cheesy? Hot on the heels of Tillamook Cheese offering up a 40-pound “Mother Loaf” block of cheese for sale comes Velveeta’s “Pinkies Out” nail polish. The Kraft Heinz product claims to create nails as smooth as melted Velveeta. And for those who find the subtle aroma of liquified cheese especially intoxicating, there’s a bonus — Pinkies Out Polish smells like creamy Velveeta too. But the nail polish isn’t actually made of cheese and isn’t edible. So please don’t lick your fingers.

Cheez-It – Sonically-aged Snacks

Speaking of cheese, Cheez-It has partnered with Pandora to create new “Aged by Audio” crackers. An obscure study from Switzerland claims that “the bio-acoustic impact of sound waves affects metabolic processes in cheese, to the point where a discernible difference in flavour becomes apparent .” In other words, cheese that has been aged to music tastes better. So Cheez-It and Pandora worked together to sonically-age the cheese used in the snacks to an array of hip-hop music for six months. A mixtape of the songs used to age the cheese is currently being rolled out with the help of SiriusXM radio.

Doritos – Stranger Things ’80s Music Festival

In the QSR realm, Doritos claims their big 1986 Music Fest was canceled when its tour bus mysteriously vanished while traveling through Hawkins, Indiana. Which coincidentally happens to be the setting for Netflix’s Stranger Things series. 

Now the concert has finally taken place, as Doritos was able to open a portal to the Stranger Things netherworld to present “Live from the Upside Down.” The virtual event featured 80’s bands The Go-Go’s, Soft Cell, and Corey Hart, together with modern-day performer Charli XCX. 80’s music lovers could access the show via information found on specially marked Doritos bags or by registering on Doritos’ website. Will the big event spawn a streaming concert trend? Stranger things have happened.

Taco Bell – Mexican Pizza: The Musical

To welcome the return of Mexican Pizza to its menu, Taco Bell is creating an “off-off-Broadway” musical starring Mexican Pizza lovers Doja Cat, Dolly Parton, and popular TikToker Victor Kunda. Each of them had publicly demanded the pizza’s return. The show will tell how a valiant army of Taco Bell lovers fought to bring back their beloved Mexican Pizza against all odds. Entitled Mexican Pizza: The Musical, the show will premiere exclusively on TikTok and feature music by Grammy-winning songwriting duo Abigail Barlow and Emily Bear, who already have a TikTok hit with Bridgerton: The Musical. Kunda has even posted a video of himself rehearsing for the big event, which quickly went viral.

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