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BizReport : Advertising archives : November 01, 2016

Hormel Foods is bringing home the virtual bacon

Bacon marketing is once again embracing technology to tickle the taste-buds of a new generation of bacon-lovers.

by Helen Leggatt

It seems bacon marketing is on a tech-streak(y?). First we had Oscar Meyer's "Wake Up and Smell the Bacon" alarm clock iOS app that awoke users with the sound of cooking bacon (as well as the smell if you managed to bag one of their unique devices).

Now, another bacon brand - Hormel - is upping the tech-stakes by using virtual reality to promote and sell their Black Label range in their Black Market campaign.

The VR videos, best viewed using a Google Cardboard, or similar, VR headset and a smartphone, enable the users to navigate through various 'flavorscapes' based on the company's various bacon varieties. For best effect, Hormel is offering a limited number of free custom bacon-scented viewers, which can be ordered on the VR experience website.

"We're proud to advance our mission of celebrating the exceptional, pushing bacon-forward and bringing better bacon into more homes with new distribution channels and buying experiences," said Steve Venenga, vice president of marketing at Hormel Foods.

"The bacon needs of consumers and Hormel Black Label bacon customers are constantly changing, prompting us to create experiences that deliver beyond their expectations."

It is virtual reality experiences such as Hormel's that consumers in the U.S. are excited about, according to research earlier this year from the Advanced Imaging Society. Their survey of 1,000 adults found that 69% between the ages of 18 and 60 were excited about experiencing virtual reality.

Unsurprisingly, perhaps, interest was greatest among younger consumers (72% of 18-29 year olds said they were looking forward to experiencing virtual reality), however almost as many 30-44 year olds said the same (70%) and even among older age groups (45-60) interest was high (62%).

"These results are remarkable for a new entertainment medium," said Jim Chabin, President of the Advanced Imaging Society. "Significantly, fully two-thirds of respondents reported that they are 'more excited' about VR than they were of either HDTV or 3D in their earliest days. And across the board, consumers who have already 'experienced VR' are even more enthusiastic."

Tags: advertising, brand awareness, brand marketing, technology, virtual reality

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