General Mills' Co-Brand With Buzzfeed's Tasty Underscores Kitting Value and Packaging Appeal
Tasty, Buzzfeed’s food and drink vertical, is co-branding with General Mills products as a way to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the Hamburger Helper brand, and diversify the publishing company’s revenue streams.
Tasty will release four co-branded dry meal kits, drawing from various culinary styles. According to Adweek, this venture is in addition to an already long list of 250 Tasty-branded licensed products, which reportedly brought in $250 million in global sales for Buzzfeed last year. Adweek also reported that Tasty’s revenue from licensed goods grew 30% over the last three years thanks to other food-centric co-branding efforts with big-name brands like Walmart, McCormick and Nestle.
The choice to partner with Hamburger Helper specifically is a result of what Tasty says is the modern culinary landscape, as younger generations turn to meal kits not only during the pandemic, but as meal kit and subscription services grow in popularity.
From General Mills’ perspective, adding the Tasty logo appeals to younger customers who know and trust the Buzzfeed brand, and keeps the Hamburger Helper product in the spotlight.
“Partnering with a cool brand is good for General Mills because it makes them relevant,” Cierán Coyle, president and chief operating officer for licensing agency LMCA, told Adweek. “It gives them some credibility with a community that otherwise would not really consider them as a brand. These kinds of revitalizing collaborations go across various industries—look at Madonna in the music world, for example. She maintains relevance by collaborating with up-and-coming artists.”
Within the food space, teaming up with a well-known home meal kit allows General Mills to renew interest in the Hamburger Helper brand by getting in front of potential customers who are now doing more home cooking. Attaching itself to a brand like Tasty and doing something as simple as putting its logo on the packaging creates a deeper effect, changing prospective customers’ impressions of the company.
This is a good example of how co-branding can work: Both parties get something out of it, it uses well-placed logos to do the talking, and it focuses on current trends and cultural situations to strategically appeal to a market.