Make Grilled Cheese Not War

Stuart Elliott presents moves made by Kraft to inject some emotion into its typical product story.

Kraft will devote a campaign that begins today to the glorification of the grilled cheese sandwich.
The television, online, print and retail campaign carries the upbeat theme “Have a happy sandwich.”
In campaigns from the longtime previous agency for Kraft Singles — the Chicago office of JWT, part of the WPP Group — the brand was peddled on “functional benefits,” Jane Hilk, vice president for marketing at the cheese and dairy business unit said.
“But we’d hit that point where consumers say: ‘I know that. What else?’ ” she said, adding: “The conversation needs to happen on an emotional level because that’s where the power of a brand comes in. We found ourselves in need of strategy change and creative change.”

Nitro is the new agency on Kraft’s block. Kathy Delaney, who recently joined Nitro as global executive creative director, said, “We’re not promising happiness; no brand can. What we’re promising is that for the three or four minutes you’re having a Kraft grilled cheese sandwich, you’re happy.”
Naturally, there will be a MySpace element to the campaign.
Sales for Kraft Singles, one of Kraft’s largest brands, totaled more than $600 million last year. Kraft spends about $40 million a year to advertise the brand.

About David Burn

Co-founder and editor of AdPulp. I wrote my first ad for a political candidate when I was 17 years old. She won her race and I felt the seductive power of advertising for the first time. I worked for seven agencies in five states before launching my own practice in 2009. Today, I am head of brand strategy and creative at Bonehook in Portland, Oregon.


  1. “presents” or “repurposes a press release” ??
    Don’t know anyone over the age of 10 who eats grilled cheese, but hey, it’s worth a shot, right?

  2. grilled cheese lover, aged 36 says:

    re: TT:
    It seems I am not the only adult who loves grilled cheese. (the word sandwich is moot…I like that, too).

  3. I love grilled cheese, esp. with bacon and tomato.

  4. Okay, so now I know 2 people.
    (Still debating whether the gourmet grilled cheese in that restaurant you linked to falls into the same category of food as the grilled Kraft American cheese on white bread the ads are pushing.)

  5. Yo, Toad, there is probably a huge (in more ways than one) audience of grilled cheese sandwich lovers, just as an entire generation continues to dine on Pop Tarts, Froot Loops and Cocoa Krispies every morning. Don’t let your own exclusive tastes dictate the gastric desires of the majority. Nearly every diner style restaurant near my workplace offers grilled cheese sandwiches, and there’s not a child in the vicinity. That said, it should also be noted that Kraft Singles are technically not cheese; hence, the name Singles. They’re a pasteurized prepared cheese product. It’s probably why the tagline reads, “Have a Happy Sandwich” (versus a happy grilled cheese sandwich).

  6. Looking forward to seeing these ads next to an Always- Have A Happy Period ad.