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A Very Special (K) New Year


We all know that one of the most popular New Year’s resolutions is to lose weight or start dieting, and Special K is here to remind us all of that. According to AdAge, Special K Kicks Off “Wake-Up Call” in Times Square. Just before midnight in Times Square, Kellogg will launch its newest digital and integrated marketing campaign which focuses on consumer’s healthy-eating goals. For the whole month of January, Special K will run billboard, mobile and online media campaigns, kicking off with the Nasdaq and Reuters billboards on Times Square just as the ball drops on Newy Year’s Eve. Display ads will encourage consumers to share their holidays indulgences and wake-up calls, and there is also a social media mobile component where consumers can text their weight loss goals, as well as 15- and 30-second TV spots.

Special K is focused as “a weight-management brand, and [it] always had a marketing presence during resolution season,” according to Kellogg spokeswoman Kris Charles. However, the campaign hasn’t even started yet and there is already some criticism, with some people accusing Special K of being a party pooper for reminding people of dieting during one of the most festive celebrations. Personally, I think the campaign is a great example of timing, relevancy, and media savvy. Special K is positioning itself to be present at the consumer’s critical moment, aka right when most of its target market (women) realize and vow to make dietary changes. Besides, who says you can’t celebrate and think of your health at the same time?

Maybe I just have a soft spot for Kellogg – after all, this is one of the (smarter) companies whose own New Year’s resolution is to spend more money online, forecasting their digital efforts to surpass their broadcast effort’s ROI (yay for online!) But in any case, kudos to Special K for reigning in the New Year with an innovative advertising campaign that aims to reach its target consumers in non-traditional, relevant and engaging ways.

Wishing everyone a healthy, happy, fantastic 2009 ahead! Cheers!


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