Kroger Fields Multiple Football Plays

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Kroger Fields Multiple Football Plays

By Samantha Nelson - 02/23/2018

Supermarket operator includes brands in Game Day Greats campaign and beyond

Anheuser-Busch InBev earned a starring role in Kroger’s annual “Game Day Greats” campaign by running an exclusive “Tailgate Prize Vault” rewards program.

Shoppers who purchased products from the manufacturer between Aug. 14 and Nov. 14, 2017, received a receipt code redeemable on a promotional website ( for between 30 and 160 points, depending on purchase value. Entrants could also earn an additional five points by uploading a picture of an in-store display for the campaign or otherwise promoting the effort via Facebook or Twitter. The points could be redeemed for branded merchandise including Budweiser sunglasses (25 points), a Bud Light folding chair (250 points) or a Michelob Ultra duffle bag (650 points). Conshohocken, Pennsylvania-based AYC Media handled the program.

A web page operated by Brisbane, California-based You Technology linked to the Tailgate Prize Vault website and hosted Kroger’s annual Game Day Greats instant-win game from Aug. 20 to Sept. 23, 2017. Open only to loyalty cardholders, the game awarded 88,300 digital coupons for free SKUs, more than three times the prize pool of last year’s game. The web page also facilitated party platter orders and delivered recipes that incorporated products from brands including Hershey Co.’s Reese’s, Mondelez International’s Ritz, Kellogg Co.’s Cheez-It and Unilever’s Hellmann’s.

The Game Day Greats campaign received heavy support in stores on floorstands stocking private label Private Selection and PepsiCo/Frito-Lay’s Tostitos, plus News America Marketing’s SmartSource floor clings and shelf talkers from Mizkan America’s Bertolli, Mars Inc.’s M&M’s, Smithfield Foods’ Eckrich, and Campbell Soup Co.’s Pepperidge Farm Goldfish, Pace and Campbell’s Chunky.

The marketing effort incorporated TV and radio spots, run-of-press ads in newspapers including The Courier-Journal in Louisville, display ads on websites such as, carousel ads on chain home pages, email ads, and Facebook and Twitter updates.

After a pause for the holiday season, the Game Day Greats campaign returned for a second flight leading up to the National Football League’s Super Bowl.

A “Pull for Prizes” instant-win game awarded 66,300 digital coupons for brands including Kraft Heinz Co.’s Velveeta, Campbell Soup Co.’s Chunky Maxx, Coca-Cola Co.’s Powerade and Conagra Brands’ Hebrew National. Loyalty cardholders entered from Dec. 24, 2017, to Feb. 2 through the campaign’s promotional website. Display ads on websites such as and, carousel ads on chain home pages, and Facebook and Twitter updates touted the coupons and recipes also found on the promotional website.

PepsiCo/Frito-Lay provided account-specific spectaculars for the campaign. Pepsi and Kellogg Co.’s Cheez-It also deployed Game Day Greats shelf talkers via SmartSource. Standees and balloons from the retailer supported the effort. TV and radio spots rounded out the marketing campaign.

Kroger’s Harris-Teeter eschewed the Game Day Greats program in favor of running a series of its own chain-specific promotions during football season.

Activity at the chain kicked off with a sweeps activating Harris-Teeter and PepsiCo’s joint sponsorship of the NFL’s Carolina Panthers. VIC loyalty cardholders who made a purchase in stores from Aug. 23 to Sept. 12, 2017, were automatically entered in the sweeps, which awarded tickets to the Dec. 24, 2017, game against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers along with field and parking passes and $100 worth of food vouchers.

Danone’s Oikos, an NFL sponsor, earned special attention at Harris-Teeter by running a sweeps awarding a grand-prize trip to the 2018 Super Bowl in Minneapolis. VIC loyalty cardholders were automatically entered when they made any purchase in stores from Sept. 6 to Oct. 8, 2017. Facebook and Twitter updates promoted the sweeps.

Harris-Teeter also continued to activate its Carolina Panthers sponsorship by asking VIC cardholders to guess which Panthers player would sack the opposing quarterback during the second half of weekly games. Those who guessed correctly each week from Sept. 1 to Dec. 31, 2017, were entered in a sweeps awarding a $500 store gift card. Panthers players also helped design custom sub sandwiches promoted with in-store autograph sessions. In-store giveaways and social media activity supported.

VIC members with digital accounts also were automatically entered into an “All Star Getaway” sweeps through from Oct. 1 to Dec. 31, 2017. The grand prize was a trip to Orlando, Florida, to attend the NFL’s Pro Bowl on Jan. 28. An Oct. 30, 2017, Facebook update encouraged consumers to join the program to be entered into the sweeps.

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