Kraft Puts Brands In Drivers Seat For NASCAR

Oreo-RitzKraft Foods is continuing its relationship as the Official Cookie of NASCAR and Stewart-Haas Racing. The company is using the relationship to promote its Oreo, Nilla and Nutter Butter and Ritz and Wheat Thins cracker brands.

Kraft's partnership with Stewart-Hass racing makes the cookie and cracker Kraft brands associate sponsors of racers Tony Stewart and Ryan Newman in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series.

The Northfield, IL-base packaged goods company, which has been an Official NASCAR Partner since 2000, will leverage the partnership this year to do a range of marketing programs from TV down to point-of-purchase programs with retail partners and specially marked packages of Oreo cookies and Ritz crackers for a national consumer sweepstakes.

Next year, for the first time, Ritz will host a national digital and social media sweepstakes on its Facebook page where a fan will have the chance to win a prize package to go to the 2012 Sprint Cup Series Awards Ceremony.



Michael Tilly, Kraft's associate director of consumer engagement, tells Marketing Daily that NASCAR has been the beneficiary of one of the longest promotional relationships Kraft has ever done. "Orio and Ritz are our flagship brands and with our portfolio of cookie and cracker products this offers great visibility for us."

He says consumer activation will include traditional marketing programs, customer specific programs (customer meaning retail partner in this case), where, for example, at Dollar General, there will be a big vendor program that generates scale by involving several other CPG brands that are NASCAR sponsors.

"I think Dollar General is unique because they are very supportive of the platform. We have customers that activate in different ways, but they really support it from the top of the house: they get very involved in creating marketing platforms that work with a group of brands," says Tilly. He says Dollar General incorporates Kraft's brands in its own NASCAR merchandising programs, store circulars and point-of-purchase displays, and in programs with complementary key partners, "Such as consumer solutions with snack and beverage offerings," he says.

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