News in Brief

Sesame pairs Elmo with broccoli to curb obesity
November 1, 2005

Sesame pairs Elmo with broccoli to curb obesity

Fuelled by a US$73,000 grant from the Dr. Robert C. Atkins Foundation, Sesame Workshop will embark on a research project by year’s end to gauge whether associating its characters with healthy food products effectively spurs kids to eat more veggies.

When a control group comprised of 104 preschoolers was asked to choose between a chocolate bar and broccoli earlier this year, 78% went straight for the candy. But when an Elmo sticker was slapped on the vegetable and a generic character sticker on the chocolate bar, 50% of the same group of kids opted for the veggie snack. If ‘The Effectiveness of Characters on Children’s Food Choices’ study – which should canvas 180 kids over the course of a full year – supports this initial finding, Sesame anticipates signing more character-based licensing deals with healthy food companies.

Cartoon US grows cross-country marketing tentacles

Cartoon’s promo team is branching out to connect with new brand partners and oversee campaigns from three home bases now, rather than one. Terri Tuttle has been upped from director to senior director of promotions marketing and will handle Midwest clients from the Chicago area. And Sabina Spigel has been promoted from manager of the promotions marketing department in New York to director of West coast operations in Los Angeles. Both execs will report to Phyllis Ehrlich, who continues to reign supreme over all things marketing-related as senior VP of promotions marketing in New York.

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