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Kraft Foods to move 10pc of media budget to mobile

NEW YORK - A senior Kraft Foods executive at the Mobile Marketing Summit: Holiday Focus 2012 confirmed that the company, soon to be renamed Mondelez, will move 10 percent of its media budget to mobile.

The executive said Kraft will pull the funds from a variety of channels, including from TV, print, out-of-home and digital during the keynote opening titled ?Kraft Foods: How Mobile Is Transforming the Global Snacks Powerhouse.? Exactly where the mobile budget will be invested is still in the works, per the executive.

?We?re pulling it from all different areas because mobile spans across everything,? said Melissa Laux, director of US media at Kraft Foods, Northfield, IL.

?We are trying to figure out the best way to accomplish this,? she said. ?The marketers have been really receptive to this. They understand this is where our consumers are.?

The Mobile Marketing Summit: Holiday Focus 2012 conference was a Mobile Marketer event.

Brand by brand
When it comes to decisions about whether to invest the mobile budget in brand-building messages or performance strategies, Ms. Laux said this is determined on a brand-by-brand basis.

?We don?t have a formula,? Ms. Laux said. ?For Oreo, everyone knows the brand, so engagement is so important.

?With ID, a new brand, awareness is more important,? she said.

Ms. Laux discussed how mobile is transforming Kraft?s global gum, candy and snack business, which will be spun off as a new company named Mondelez Int?l on Oct. 1.

Mobile applications are playing a growing role for Kraft Foods, both with its own branded applications as well as various third-party apps such as shopkick and Viggle.

Mobile is also impacting how consumers shop thanks to the growing number of apps available to assist with various shopping activities.

This is important for Kraft because it has a large presence in retail stores with billions of packages of Kraft food items on store shelves every year.

Third-party apps
Kraft launched the app iFood Assistant a few years ago and is on its fourth version, which launched in December with new functionality such as the ability to talk into the app to create a grocery list.

Kraft has also used the shopkick app to help it engage shoppers at multiple stages of the shopping journey. This includes reaching consumers sitting on the couch at home with a game, delivering coupons when they check into a store via shopkick and using shopkick to engage shoppers in a store aisle by encouraging them to scan an item.

The results have been promising with 59 percent of users either purchasing or saying they are more likely to purchase after engaging with the Chips Ahoy brand on shopkick.

Kraft is also partnering with the app Viggle to offer content, curate feeds and invite users to participate in a dialog with its brands. A small test with Viggle during the red carpet live event for the Oscars saw a video completion rate of 80 percent, per Ms. Laux.

The company has also leveraged the Into Now mobile app to promote its Velveeta Cheesy Skillets during the Golden Globes.

?Viggle, Into Now taken together still represent a small audience,? Ms. Laux said. ?What we are doing is learning and we are going to be able to jump on this technology as it becomes bigger and more mainstream.?

Mobile payments
Kraft is also looking at other ways to incorporate mobile into the consumer experience, including using mobile payments. Kraft has been testing vending machines for Jello, Cadbury and other brands in several markets and will looking to integrate Google Wallet into them so users can pay for their purchases via a mobile phone.

Additionally, the brand is partnering with Stop & Shop on their mobile scanners to enable shoppers to automatically redeem coupons in the store.

?Why mobile at Kraft? Because we can?t afford to lose here,? Ms. Laux said.

?We are setting the business model to reach the mobile consumer,? she said. ?We need to rethink and to reinvent.

?Mobile is everywhere. The time is now for marketers and Kraft to go mobile.?

Final Take
Melissa Laux is director of US media at Kraft Foods,  Northfield, IL