Heinz ketchup gets personal on cross-country tour

Summer marketing campaign enlists help from former Toronto Blue Jays

Kraft Heinz Canada has gone on tour this summer, crossing the country with a traveling experiential marketing program that lets people take home personalized bottles of its Heinz brand ketchup.

The bottles—which can have photos or personalized messages printed on a Heinz “keystone” label—are the cornerstone of the marketing campaign that has seen the brand appearing at major events and festivals since May.

The summer-themed effort got an extra promotional push with the appearances by three iconic former Toronto Blue Jays Carlos Delgado, Joe Carter and Roberto Alomar.

“This summer we wanted to help elevate and create iconic summer moments, centered around the three B’s—burgers, baseball and bottles of Heinz Ketchup,” said Nina Patel, marketing director, Kraft Heinz Canada in an email to Canadian Grocer.

Delgado kicked off the program during the May long weekend by appearing with Heinz at Weber’s -- a popular burger restaurant alongside a busy highway that runs between Toronto and cottage country north of the city.

“Kids, fans and burger lovers alike were invited to step into the batting cage with him, win prizes and get their own personalized Heinz Ketchup bottle printed while they enjoyed their meal,” said Patel.

On June 1, Heinz also showed up at a kids’ baseball game in Mississauga, Ont. with a marching band, mascots, and both Carter and Alomar. “We wanted to make little leaguers feel like they were sharing the same field as their baseball heroes,” she said. Hotdogs were served, the band played and the ex-Jays played ball with the kids. The event was captured on video with a 45-second spot being pushed through an online video and Cineplex media buy.

Aside from the Weber’s appearance to kick-off tour, the Heinz ketchup pop-up has made stops at the BBQ Eats Festival in Toronto, the Sound of Music Festival in Burlington, Ont. (just west of Toronto) and the Ottawa Jazz Festival. Through those four events, Heniz had given out 7,000 personalized bottles of Heinz Ketchup asking people to tell their social networks about the bottles using the hashtag #betterwithheinz.

The tour is heading to the Calgary Stampede and will also appear at Taste of the Danforth, and Yonge and Dundas Square in August before wrapping up the summer at the Pacific National Exhibition in Vancouver Sept. 1 to 4.

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