Produce marketers get fresh with new campaign

The Canadian Produce Marketing Association is juicing up its image with a new multimedia campaign that includes its first social media efforts.

Freggie is getting a facelift.

The loveable broccoli-headed mascot who has been coaching kids to eat healthier for more than 10 years will be undergoing a bit of a makeover come March 1, as the Canadian Produce Marketing Association (CPMA) updates the message it sends to kids.

The CMPA will roll out a new national multi-platform campaign featuring a 30-second PSA created by Ottawa’s Mediaplus Advertising that will target TV, paid targeted TV, radio, online and – for the first time – the social media triumvirate of YouTube, Facebook and Twitter.

‘The campaign is targeted at Canadians at large, but for the purposes of media buying, we’re really targeting females 25-to-54 with a secondary audience, which is our kids campaign aimed at elementary school children,’ Melanie Richer, CMPA senior marketing and communications manager, tells MiC. ‘We do little newsletters that are available. And also there will probably be some social media programs around the kids programs as well.’

Part of the campaign is a pilot project in Ottawa schools called Freggie Fridays, in which kids are encouraged to bring fruit and veg instead of other snacks every Friday for a month. Every fruit or veggie they bring in earns them a ballot for a draw that’s done at the end of the month, and that’s supported by a website.

‘It’s all about getting kids to think about fruits and veggies in their daily lives,’ Richer says. 

The change is part of a wider refocus and relaunch of the Ottawa-based CMPA’s ‘5 to 10 Days Of Better Health‘ campaign, in which the org partnered with the Canadian Cancer Society and the Heart & Stroke Foundation of Canada more than a decade ago.

‘Basically it was a PSA campaign aimed at getting consumers to eat more fruits and vegetables based on the recommendations of the Canadian Food Guide,’ Richer explains.

‘After many talks with our key stakeholders, we felt that Canadians knew that fruits and veggies are good for them. They also told us that they know they’re not hitting their targets and they need to eat more, and to stop telling them to eat more because it’s not helping.’

Instead, Richer claims Canadians want to know how to get more fruits and veggies into their diet and convince their reluctant kids to also adapt healthier eating habits.

‘Our March 1 rebrand and relaunch is focusing on just that,’ says Richer. ‘Plus great tips, ideas and recipes on how to increase fruits and veggies in the diet.’

Although Richer was reluctant to offer more detail about the campaign prior to a Feb. 16 webinar, she did reveal that several agencies pitched the CMPA for the new campaign, with Mediaplus winning it on the basis of ‘showing us something really clever and different from a social marketing point of view that we hadn’t seen before.’

‘We did focus group testing with teens, moms and adults male and female with no kids in the home across Canada in both languages, and the groups took to it very well,’ Richer notes. ‘I’m really excited about it. It’s something fun and whimsical that I think will stand out.’