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Kraft to untwist toons on ABC Disney block

Kraft is at it again. First it was the Noggle Goggles, then the Nickel-O-Scopes, now the Toon Twister. It's yet another premium kids can use to interact with the TV, but instead of Nickelodeon, the packaged food company is teaming up...
January 1, 1999

Kraft is at it again. First it was the Noggle Goggles, then the Nickel-O-Scopes, now the Toon Twister. It’s yet another premium kids can use to interact with the TV, but instead of Nickelodeon, the packaged food company is teaming up for the first time with Disney’s One Saturday Morning block on ABC.

The ‘Toon Twister TV’ U.S. promotion will include spots featuring phrases and images broadcast upside down and backwards during the branded block on February 20, 27 and March 6. The segments can be decoded using mirrored periscopes called Toon Twisters, which will be produced by Bethel, Connecticut-based kid premium specialist Alba Kids. Twenty-five million packages of Kraft Macaroni & Cheese, Oscar Mayer Lunchables, Kraft Singles, Kool-Aid and kid-targeted Post cereals will distribute the premiums, which also double as instant-win game pieces, through in-packs and mail-ins.

‘Just prior to the events actually happening, one of the presenters on Disney’s One Saturday Morning will say, `OK kids, it’s time to get your Toon Twister out,’ and then the kids can play along,’ says Deb Sawch, head of the Kids Task Force at Kraft. Animated characters from Disney’s Hercules, Doug, Pepper Ann and Recess will host the spots, which were still in development as of press time.

The program will be supported a US$4 million ad and promo effort, including Disney/ABC on-air promotions, an in-store program including check-out or near-pack display premium giveaways, and locker-size coded posters distributed in magazines. Kraft will also promote the event and distribute related premiums (mostly stickers and some board games) through an additional 100 million packages of the involved brands. All in all, Sawch estimates that the promotion will reach about 95% of the kids in the target six to 12 age group in the U.S.

‘We always look for a premium which has play-value far beyond the event itself. This one can be used with print and packaging, as well as just to look at things across the room,’ says Sawch. ‘It really extends beyond the TV experience.’

Kraft has been hooked on interactive premiums since its Nogglevision partnership with Nick yielded a 16% merchandising increase and 4% incremental volume increase in the summer of 1997. But despite that rewarding history and an exclusive deal with Nick for back-to-school promotions, Sawch says the company generally prefers not to lock into a single broadcaster. ‘It’s in both of our best interests not to necessarily have exclusives,’ she says, ‘because the timing isn’t always appropriate for both of us.’

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