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Pringles takes title role on video-game channel

Jul 8, 2002  •  Post A Comment

Procter & Gamble continues to integrate its products into entertainment content through a multimillion-dollar deal to title a program with its Pringles brand on the new 24-hour video-game channel, G4.
“This relationship between Pringles and G4 is a great example of how strategic partnerships enable our brands to better connect with target consumers,” said Jim Stengel, P&G’s global marketing officer. “It’s about being where the consumer wants to be.”
The half-hour program, “Cheat! Pringles Gamers Guide,” will launch later this month featuring the salted snack and its “Mr. P” spokescharacter within the show, during commercial breaks and as part of special interstitials including an online poll of favorite games or “cheat codes,” the results of which will be shared during the show.
Julie Eddleman, North American Pringles brand manager, said the company sees the partnership as “an opportunity to get in at the beginning of something that will hit our prime prospect in a unique way.” She compared the launch of G4 to the MTV launch, pointing to gaming as possibly “the last area of TV where there is growth and exposure.”
According to Dale Hopkins, senior VP of distribution and sales at Comcast-owned G4, gaming was a roughly $10 billion business last year, making it the fastest-growing entertainment form, with more business than movies. According to A.C. Nielsen EDI, U.S. box office receipts last year were $8.13 billion.
The digital-tier network launched May 1 in 6 million homes, featuring programming highlighting the latest video-game news, tips and tricks and behind-the-scenes looks at celebrity gamers. Ms. Hopkins said the network hopes to reach 8 million homes by 2003 based on the strength of interest in the genre from roughly 145 million Americans ages 12 to 34. That growing interest is what sparked the tie with P&G as well as advertising from Microsoft and the U.S. Navy, among others.
The deal was forged by Grey Worldwide’s Alliance, an entertainment development and strategic partnership firm and sibling to P&G roster shop Grey Global Group.