Account Executives from GREY Advertising sought out Brent Stafford and Michael Malone to create an innovative branded entertainment opportunity to build targeted exposure and drive sales for the Pringles brand. Mr. Stafford, renowned for his knowledge of the television and videogame industries, knew that Pringles was the “chip of choice” for young adult video gamers and he began searching for a TV programming opportunity to exploit this consumer insight.
In July 2002, working directly with Procter & Gamble, Stafford & Malone built a multi-dimensional, multi-million dollar, multi-year marketing partnership between Pringles and G4 – TV 4 Gamers. The deal was category exclusive and further built Pringles as the gamer’s chip of choice.
What’s G4 & Cheat?
G4 is the MTV of the Video Game Generation!
Cheat! Pringles Gamers Guide is a Pringles-branded, G4-produced program, that gives viewers the best cheats and strategies for beating their favorite games. It is a leading example of today’s new form of product integration in a world where getting your brand seen isn’t as easy as just buying television spots and print ads.
Watch Cheat! Show Clip
Watch Cheat! Branded Elements
Centerpiece of the Pringles | G4 Programming Partnership
Cheat! Pringles Gamers Guide is G4’s half-hour show that helps keep gamers ahead of the game. It is the source for strategies, secrets and cheats for viewer’s favorite video games. Each show covers a variety of different games with strategic walk-throughs, by revealing easter eggs and, of course, dishing out the cheat codes.
- Integration across all show elements
- Brand name in show title
- Animated opening featuring Pringles “Mr. P” character
- Brand positioning woven into program’s tone and manner
- Verbal mentions throughout show including in and out of commercial breaks
- Pringles cans, multipacks and Pringles mini cans on set and in shot
- Pringles animated images on the plasma screens and television monitors on set
Pringles partnership with G4 is continued outside of the Cheat! Pringles Gamers Guide show with Pringles Cheat! Sheets — two minute interstitials that highlight a particular cheat or walk-though from the show.
- Branded animated opens and closes
- Branded lower-third on-screen graphics
- Particularly popular or hard to find cheats that young adults crave
- Each interstitial is two minutes long, and outside of the Cheat! Pringles Gamers Guide programming
- Pringles Cheat! Sheets run ten times per week throughout key day-parts
Based entirely on the feedback of Cheat! Pringles Gamers Guide viewers, The Pringles Pop-ularity Poll is a recurring, Pringles-branded segment within the show that takes place at the end of the second act of each episode. Visitors to the Cheat! Pringles Gamers Guide webpage vote on their favorite cheats, the most popular of which is featured in the Pringles Pop-ularity Poll
- Viewer interaction and determination of the results make the Pringles Pop-ularity Poll’s branded elements more meaningful
- The recurring nature of the segment keeps the branding at top-of-mind
- Pringles-branded graphics throughout segment with customized animations that reinforce the Pringles brand positioning
On Pack | In-store
- 140 million cans of Pringles included G4 branding and messaging on the “membrane” – the flavor seal at the top of the can
- 6 million club packs of Pringles carried full G4 messaging including tune-in. Total G4 impressions = 22 million. The Club Pack was a new P&G priority and was sold in food wholesalers and warehouses across the U.S.
Pringles | G4 Websites
Cheat! Pringles Gamers Guide section on the Pringles and G4 websites focused on extending the Pringles brand, getting sign-ups for the “Pringles Power-Ups” newsletter and to deliver exclusive Cheat! content and branded video games.
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Pringles® is a registered trademark of The Procter & Gamble Company.
Project executed under a consulting contract between Shaky Egg Communications Inc. and GREY Alliance.