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03/01/2021

Blue Buffalo Brings Vet Support to Walmart

Patrycja Malinowska
Associate Director - Content, P2PI
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General Mills’ Blue Buffalo ran a cause marketing program at Walmart to tie in to the Nov. 11 observance of Veterans Day last year.

The brand brought its ongoing support of Sierra Delta to the mass merchant, promising to donate $1 (up to $275,000) to the nonprofit for every eligible bag of Blue Buffalo dog food purchased at the retailer throughout the month. 

Related retail media activity spanned a carousel ad spotted on the walmart.com home page on Nov. 10. The ad invited consumers to “Help veterans get service dogs” and linked to a dedicated brand showcase within the site. The destination detailed how Sierra Delta helps pair wounded veterans with service dogs and spotlighted qualifying products, which included 6-pound bags of the brand's entry-level Blue Life Protection Formula and 4.5-pound bags of Blue Wilderness.

An aisle violator touted the initiative in stores, where Blue Buffalo products are merchandised in-line and, in many locations, on permanent endcaps. Additional marketing support included a 30-second TV spot and a 10-second recut, sponsored influencer posts seeded by Inmar Intelligence, and multiple social media updates from Sierra Delta.

Originally sold exclusively via pet specialty retailers and online, Blue Buffalo was first spotted on Walmart shelves in early 2019. A circular feature depicting the retailer's "Investing in American Jobs" logo introduced the brand as "now available" that June, and since then the partners have generally maintained a steady stream of co-op activity.

Most recently, Blue Buffalo has been using its walmart.com showcase to promote a "Blue Year's Resolution" incentive dangling a $5 or $15 store gift card with purchase of $25 or $50 worth of qualifying Blue Buffalo products, respectively. A walmart.com home page carousel ad spotted on March 1 — the last day of the promotion, which kicked off Dec. 19, 2020 — linked to the showcase. A 10-second, co-op TV spot supported. The offer was valid across several participating retailers. Toronto-based Snipp Interactive handled.

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