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Mexican Hass importers tie promotions to Major League Baseball playoffs

by Rand Green | August 01, 2011

During Major League Baseball playoffs in October, the Mexican Hass Avocado Importers Association will be conducting at aggressive promotional campaign tied to the playoffs and designed "to trigger new consumption occasions," according to a written statement from MHAIA furnished to The Produce News July 25.

The Avocados from Mexico 'Taste the WOW' Tour will distribute up to 20,000 samples of hot dogs with avocado spread as well as booklets with avocado recipes, nutrition benefits and selection tips, at various ballparks, health and food events and other venues around the country this fall. Above: an Avocados from Mexico representative displays a 'Taste the WOW' booklet with recipes and tips.
The campaign, called "The Big Hit," will include "a media buy with Turner Sports and MLB on TBS, shopper and trade marketing, print advertising support, online marketing, stadium sampling, social media and public relations," according to the statement.

In the retail component of the campaign, "360-degree retail displays will promote avocados and playoff festivities at the store level" in more than 3,600 stores. "Displays will feature 'upgrade your hotdog' recipes and promote The Big Hit," the statement said.

"To help encourage the trade to authorize displays -- and motivate produce departments to build them -- each display will be packed with an Avocados from Mexico camera," the statement continued. "Cameras submitted with display photos will earn the winners one of 500 official MLB baseball caps featuring the teams of the winners' choice. Ten produce departments will also each receive $500 to donate to the local youth baseball organization of choice, and will be recognized in a newspaper ad. To launch the 2011 Big Hit promotion, importers will be invited to entertain key customers VIP style at one of three MLB games in August and September -- Wrigley Field, Fenway Park and Yankee Stadium."

The advertising portion of the promotion "includes a broadcast campaign with Turner Sports and MLB on TBS, delivering more than 60 million consumer impressions," the statement said. "The spots will run from Sept. 30 through Oct. 13 during the MLB Division Series and the National League Championship series." MHAIA will debut "a new TV spot promoting game day entertaining with nutritious and delicious Avocados from Mexico and a chance for consumers to enter to win the Ultimate 3D Home Entertainment Package in The Big Hit Sweepstakes."

The print advertising campaign will promote the "new avocado consumption season and the sweepstakes in six food and women's magazines, delivering a circulation of almost 50 million readers," the statement said. Additionally, "online marketing will thematically support The Big Hit and promote the consumer sweepstakes."

MHAIA's Avocados from Mexico "Taste the WOW" tour, which made its debut in spring 2011 "will be back again this fall, sampling nutritious and delicious avocado recipes at consumer events" in Boston, New York City, Charlotte, NC, Atlanta and Washington, DC, according to the statement. "The tour will also provide consumers with handy tips for selecting the perfect avocado and easy [preparation] tips and recipes." Details on where the tour will be stopping can be found on-line at and will be announced on Facebook and Twitter.

The "Taste the WOW" tour "Taste-mobile" will stop at five Major League Baseball stadiums in the Eastern United States, distributing up to 20,000 samples of "our Grand Slam Dogs -- hot dogs with a Latin-inspired avocado spread" as well as with booklets with avocado recipes, nutrition benefits and selection tips. "Registered dietitians who work with the MLB teams or who specialize in sports nutrition will serve as media spokespeople in the local markets."

During the 2011-12 Avocados from Mexico season, MHAIA will "continue with its national print ad campaign, focusing on nutrition and versatility, targeting women's, foodservice and health-fitness publications," reaching a total of 325 million women, according to the statement. (Presumably there is some overlap among the readerships of the various publications.)

"Starting in mid-October, MHAIA will be kicking off a sweepstakes for three lucky consumers to win a holiday dinner prepared at home for their family and friends by an award-winning chef," the statement said. "The dinner parties will take place in early December. Footage of the events along with recipes and helpful entertaining tips will be posted on web site in December. The sweepstakes will be advertised in national print publications and on-line.