Haagen-Dazs decided that it wanted to introduce a unique line of ice cream that used rare ingredients from around the world.
Because many of its consumers are traditionalists who love simple flavors like vanilla and chocolate, the Reserve line was targeted to foodies who were ready to explore new and daring ice cream flavors.
Because of the limited quantity of ingredients used in Reserve, Haagen-Dazs couldn't produce enough for its main line, says Josh Gellert, Haagen-Dazs brand manager. Thus the special edition was sent to pre-selected markets to build word-of-mouth buzz. To play upon the uniqueness of the ice creams, the team marketed the line as "fine new wine."
A wine sommelier gave New York editors a "tasting" and suggested food and wine pairings for the new flavors, which included Pomegranate Chip and Amazon Valley Chocolate. Through the Pyramid White Pint Program, the line was exclusively delivered to 75 influencers who were encouraged to pass along the ice creams to three friends, creating layers of referrals. Haagen-Dazs created a "Sweet Suite"in San Francisco's Hotel Triton, designed in the Reserve line's image, bringing the brand to life.
Through the program, 2,800 deliveries were sent to an extended network of brand enthusiasts. "It was a really great way to drive word of mouth buzz among consumers before the product actually hit the shelves," notes Shannon Gomes, SAE, Ketchum. The "Sweet Suite" achieved 70% occupancy rate in the first two months, with national and local media impressions totaling 8.7 million.
Ketchum will continue to work with the Haagen-Dazs brand on all its PR efforts.
PR Team: Haagen-Dazs (Oakland, CA) and Ketchum (San Francisco, CA)
Campaign: Launch of Haagen-Dazs Reserve
Duration: December 2006 to September 2007
Budget: About $200,000