Kind deploys birds, drones, hot air balloons to send out new frozen bars

Linda J. Dodson

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Dive Brief:

  • Snacks brand Kind today launched a contest that supports a new line of frozen food bars, Kind Frozen, according to details shared with Marketing Dive. Participants can enter the contest that plays on pandemic-driven trends through Kind’s website.
  • Three winners will see the plant-based food product delivered to their doorstep by trained bird, drone or hot air balloon, the company said. The campaign nods to consumers who are relying on delivery versus making the trip to grocery stores as coronavirus lockdowns continue to disrupt regular operations.
  • Kind also enlisted Antoni Porowski, food expert of Netflix’s “Queer Eye,” to host a one-on-one video call with each of the three winners where he will answer any of their questions. Porowski will promote the effort through his social media channels, Kind said.

Dive Insight:

Kind is leaning into several consumer trends that have surged as a result of the coronavirus pandemic to promote a new line of frozen snacks. The airborne effort acknowledges that life is “far from normal” in the U.S., reflected in the uptick in delivery orders from people who are cautious to go out shopping for fear of contracting or spreading the novel coronavirus.

The contest takes the delivery concept to extremes, deploying methods both new (drones) and decidedly antiquated (trained birds, hot air balloons) to get the brand’s product out. Consumer applications of drones remain fairly rare, as the technology faces regulatory hurdles in the U.S. However, the pandemic could create a new proving ground for the category as companies rethink their supply chains and how to safely get goods to consumers’ doorsteps.

Video calls and apps that support them, such as Zoom, are similarly experiencing a wave of interest as people look to stay connected with friends and family who they can’t see in person. Kind partnering with Porowski on virtual meetings with contest winners could draw in fans of Netflix’s popular “Queer Eye” program, season five of which debuted in June.

Kind’s campaign shows how packaged food marketers are looking to innovate as their typical venues for rolling out and sampling products remain closed. At the same time, categories like snacks are seeing a boom in sales as homebound consumers pantry load and buy more comfort food, driving up the demand for direct-to-consumer offerings.

The new Kind Frozen lineup looks to tap into both the demand for goods with a long shelf life and the plant-based foods trend that’s seen a higher growth rate than general food sales amid the pandemic, according to some industry analyses.

Kind has made a concerted effort in recent months to diversify its portfolio of products beyond traditional snack bars, introducing confectionery offerings and protein bars. Kind first started selling frozen food bars exclusively at Walmart last year, but has gradually expanded the product to other retailers, according to Food Dive.

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