Shell's Aggressive Ad Campaign Touts 'New Energy Future' Ad Age Shell Oil seems to be the only oil company willing to aggressively promote itself in the wake of BP's oil spill in the Gulf. As BP's public relations efforts continue to flop and founder, Shell has launched print, TV, online and outdoor campaign, as well as two Web sites -- energygalaxy.com and shell.us/letsgo -- Michael Bush reports. The message is that the world will soon be on the road to sustainable mobility and that Shell is "ready to help tackle the challenges of the new energy future." It has been nearly a year in the making. In fact, Eric Dezenhall, CEO and co-founder of Dezenhall Resources, tells Bush that the best approach for an oil company in good times and bad is to draw as little attention to itself as possible. "Nobody likes oil companies and nobody ever will," he writes in an e-mail. Shell obviously disagrees. "We realized that in spite of the situation in the Gulf being ongoing, we wanted to launch our campaign as planned because we believe that now is an important time to engage with our customers and stakeholders," says Shell brand manager Patricia Singer. "It's important to communicate how we operate, what we need to achieve together and that we all have a role to play in meeting the growing demand and challenge of this new energy future."
Target Promotes Volunteerism, Aims At Ice Cream Lovers Retailing Today Target is offering two new super premium flavors of Ben & Jerry's ice cream -- Berry Voluntary and Brownie Chew Gooder -- that allow consumers to indulge their sweet teeth and do good at the same time. Berry Voluntary is raspberry cheesecake flavored ice cream laced with white chocolate chunks and raspberry swirls. Brownie Chew Gooder is vanilla caramel ice cream with fudge brownie pieces, finished with a caramel swirl. For a limited time, customers who register for a volunteer activity at www.VolunteerMatch.org/scoopitforward and forward the opportunity to five friends will receive a coupon for a free pint of Ben & Jerry's ice cream, redeemable at Target stores.
Study: Kids Think Cartoon Characters Make Food Taste Better Hartford Courant Arielle Levin Becker reports that there's nothing existential about the impact of cartoon characters on children's attitudes toward the food they eat. It's quite cut and dried, in fact: Researchers at the Rudd Center for Food Policy and Obesity at Yale University find that putting characters such as Dora the Explorer or Scooby Doo on food packaging can make children think the food inside tastes better than the same food packaged without the characters. Forty children aged 3 to 6 were each given two samples of graham crackers, gummy fruit snacks and baby carrots. They were asked whether the two samples tasted the same, or whether one tasted better. The majority said that the food with the character on the package tasted better and that they would pick it for a snack, but the advantage was less strong for carrots. "To me, what this shows is that the influence of characters is really so powerful, they're powerful enough to actually have kids think that the food tastes better and that they want to choose it for snacks," says Christina Roberto, a graduate student at the Rudd Center and lead author of the study. The authors suggest that the use of licensed characters on junk food packaging be restricted.
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