- For Father's Day, Kraft is auctioning off five custom-made cheese sculptures made from the brand’s Sharp Cheddar Cheese and carved to look like consumers' dads, per a news release provided to Marketing Dive.
- People have until 6 p.m. EST on June 12 to place a bid on ebay.com/CheeseYourDad. The sculptures start out as a 40-pound block of cheese, and it takes three days to craft each one. Proceeds from the auction will go to hunger-relief organization Feeding America, with matching donations of up to $25,000.
- Kraft is also encouraging consumers to post photos of their dads on social media using the hashtags #CheesyIsGreat and #FamilyGreatly. The eBay bid on one of the cheddar-based busts is $830 at press time.
As marketing around Father's Day ramps up ahead of the weekend, Kraft is looking to offer a highly-personalized, unique gift idea with its limited-edition cheese sculptures, which also pun on the idea of the "cheesy dad" archetype. Given the sculptures' limited availability, the brand is trying to extend the effort via social media with the #CheesyIsGreat and #FamilyGreatly hashtags.
Kraft has put a focus on personalization in its recent marketing efforts as it looks to target modern, connected families. For its Super Bowl campaign this year, it made a TV spot in near-real-time by sourcing photos and videos from families on social media that were then stitched together. The Father's Day effort takes a similar tack by asking followers to share photos of their dads on social using Kraft's hashtags.
Engaging fans on digital and social channels is growing more important for traditional consumer-packaged goods brands that are competing with direct-to-consumer startups and trying to court younger shoppers, who tend to opt for fresher foods. Kraft Heinz, Kraft's parent company, has reported U.S. sales declines for several consecutive quarters, according to Food Dive.
Father's Day spending is expected to be a near-record $15.3 billion this year, according to forecasts from the National Retail Federation and Prosper Insights & Analytics. Other brands are also taking a humorous approach to their marketing, such as the gym chain Planet Fitness, which created calendars around the idea of the "dad bod."
However, some marketers are taking a second look at how they market to dads, especially millennial dads who believe their portrayals as hapless or uncaring in the media are out of touch. For its Father's Day campaign this year, Unilever's Dove Men+Care brand is spotlighting the issue of paid paternity leave, including through a digital content hub and short films that portray fathers as sensitive caregivers.