Nestlé’s Hot Pockets kicks off Sandwich Showdown across platforms

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Nestls Hot Pockets has kicked off a musical Sandwich Showdown in collaboration with four famous YouTube personalities, and consumers will be able to vote for their favorite videos on a mobile microsite.

The Sandwich Showdown will feature Smosh and The Warp Zone on #TeamMeat versus Brittani Louise Taylor and Taryn Southern on #TeamCrust. The cross-platform competition was developed with Defy Media to create excitement around Hot Pockets.

“The Hot Pockets Sandwich Showdown program is an extension of last years re-launch campaign, where we pitted #TeamMeat versus #TeamCrust and highlighted new ingredients like 100 percentAngus Beef,” said Bob Bryan, brand manager at Hot Pockets, Los Angeles.

“Our fans have a passion for music and college sports, and look to YouTube as a primary source of information and entertainment,” he said.”A partnership with Defy and YouTube stars like Smosh was a natural fit to continue telling our quality story.

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“We expect that most of our millennial consumers will encounter and engage with the Hot Pockets Sandwich Showdown campaign via their mobile devices. That reality impacts everything we do from planning to partnerships to creative execution.”

Sandwich showdown
Mimicking the NCAA championship games, Hot Pockets decided to create a fun musical competition that began yesterday.

Each team of YouTube stars created a music video about what they think makes Hot Pockets sandwiches so good: the meat or the crust. Consumers can vote for their favorite videos, and the video with the most votes from each team will move on to the finals.

As of press time, Smoshs “Meat VS Crust Rap Battle was in the lead for #TeamMeat with 86 percent of the votes, and Taryn Southerns “Love at First Bite: #TeamCrust” was just barely in the lead for #TeamCrust with 51 percent of the votes.

Consumers have 12 days to vote for their favorite videos before the finalists will be selected. A running clock is featured on the campaigns microsite,

The microsite is also accessible via mobile so that consumers can participate on the go and whenever they desire.

“Mobile is certainly the first screen for our target consumer and, knowing that, it is important for us to provide social engagement and video viewing seamlessly across platforms to deliver a great user experience,” Mr. Bryan said.

Additionally, when consumers vote for their favorite video, they can enter their email address to receive a coupon for $1 off any two Hot Pockets or Lean Pockets. However, the coupon needs to be printed and cannot be redeemed via mobile.

The mobile microsite

Mobile bracket
The cross-platform Sandwich Showdown is a clever way for Hot Pockets to build excitement around its products. A fun and somewhat silly campaign such as this could be perfect for mobile, when consumers have a few minutes in between meetings and can watch the videos on their phone.

A number of consumer-packaged goods have realized the potential in mobile for connecting with consumers via original content.

For instance, Brisk launched a “Not Half Bad” campaign to better connect to its core customer base while promoting its Half Half product line. The campaign showcases original content across different platforms (see story).

Post Foods launched a campaign similar to Hot Pockets in January that created a battle between Fruity Pebbles and Cocoa Pebbles. WWE Superstar John Cena is leading the fight for Fruity Pebbles, and NBA All Star Kyrie Irving is promoting Cocoa Pebbles (see story).

“We know that each content screen from TV to tablet to handheld has its own primetime and viewing behavior,” said Gary Schwartz, president/CEO of Impact Mobile, Toronto.

Mr. Schwartz is no affiliated with Hot Pockets. He commented based on his expertise on the subject.

“The mobile youth consumer is moving away from full course content to snack food content,” he said.”If you look at Hot Pockets target audience it is clear that their year-over-year TV consumption is dropping.”

Final Take
Rebecca Borison is editorial assistant on Mobile Marketer, New York

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