Here is a link to a long & interesting Financial Post article re the Recipe to Riches Contest.
A subtle recipe for success
by Hollie Shaw
Last Updated: 2 Dec 2011
The reality show in which home cooks from across the country compete to have their own recipe become a President’s Choice product has no lingering shots of a Loblaw grocery store’s interior or exterior. There are no close-ups, not even mention of PC ingredients used by the cooks in creating their recipes for a chance to be one of seven President’s Choice products sold at the retailer. Three compete in a category, such as frozen treats or savoury pies, and the winner gets $25,000 for creating the best product.
Recipe to Riches is a far cry from product placement or the overt product integration of American Idol, which prominently places a row of Coca-Cola cups in front of the seated judges. Recipe to Riches has the high-stakes feel of non-branded culinary competitions on the Food Network, from Chopped to Dinner Party Wars.
The branding subtlety works because President’s Choice has spent many years building strong equity as a tasty and reliable food brand, said Tim Welsh, senior vice-president of creative operations and new business at BBDO Toronto, noting the brand is getting a further boost from having the winning products available in-store after each episode.
Given the low-key branding, it can pass as any other show — but for the other major brand statement clearly working in Loblaw’s favour: Mr. Weston himself.
Having Mr. Weston on the judging panel not only enhances and extends his brand as the personal embodiment of the company, a role he has honed by starring in its TV ads for the past five years, it lends Loblaw brand goodwill and positions the mainstream mass grocer as an authority on good cuisine.
“Galen brings that credibility to the whole judging panel,” said Mr. Young. “He has become the face of that brand in so many ways on their advertising. What we did with our show was bring in some of that real knowledge that he has as one of the senior executives of that company.
“Forget his boyish good looks and what not — he knows what he is talking about.”