Maple Leaf Foods to Canadians: ditch handhelds for hot dogs

Cundari campaign places importance on time spent with family and friends

Rebecca Harris April 30, 2015

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With summer approaching, Maple Leaf Foods has launched a campaign urging Canadians to ditch their mobile phones in favour of another handheld device: hot dogs.

In one TV spot, called “Snap Dad,” a father is at the barbecue while his daughter watches a cat video on her phone in the backyard. He texts her to “look up,” then the two enjoy some hot dogs together outside.

In “Throwback Thursday,” a young professional sees a #TBT pic of fun cottage times, then decides to recreate the memory by inviting some friends to his rooftop, where they enjoy barbecued hot dogs.

The spots are meant to reinforce the importance of enjoying face time and outdoor meals with friends and family.

“We almost had a tongue in cheek approach to how we were approaching the summer,” said Erin Desjardins, shopper marketing manager at Maple Leaf Foods.

“We wanted to just make consumers have a little chuckle and think to themselves, ‘I can put my phone down for a few minutes and enjoy dinner with my family.’ And it’s not about saying ‘tsk tsk’ because we all have our cellphones in our hands constantly, but it’s just a little reminder.”

Maple Leaf is targeting moms and families, as well as millennials. “Young gentlemen are our number-one consumer of hot dogs, so we wanted to definitely talk to them through our TV spots as well,” said Desjardins.

The 15- and 30-second spots will air nationally in French and English until Aug. 10.

The campaign, created by Cundari, is being supported through national POS, a coupon and an eight-page magazine insert with summer recipes in LCBO’s Food & Drink magazine in Ontario, as well as national newsletters.

The campaign is a continuation of Maple Leaf’s new “Dig In!” platform, which brings together the Maple Leaf, Schneiders and Maple Leaf Prime brands under one creative umbrella for the first time.

In March, the first “Dig In!” promotion offered consumers two free movie rentals from CineplexStore.com with the purchase of three participating products under the masterbrands.