So you're in charge of promotions and marketing for a major food company. You need to stay fresh in the public's mind, make sure that you're always on the forefront when it comes to people buying food.
You need to think outside the box, right? Come up with some products that will stand out in a field of competition. That's when some truly strange pieces of merchandise made to advertise food are created.
Sure, companies have run one-time limited items, like Pizza Hut's pizza-ordering sneakers, or the Velveeta "liquid gold" fountain. But in this run-down of insane promotional items, we're sticking to the things you can buy online right now. In fact, after writing this article, we are going to purchase an embarrassing amount of this stuff for ourselves.
Domino's Pizza slip-on shoes
What is it: A pair of handmade Italian leather slip-on shoes.
How much: $159
Mama mia! These skate-style shoes look to be pretty quality. While you really wouldn’t know they were Domino’s pizza branded without the logo printed near the heel, these are just the thing to say: “I can afford high-end leather while still being a totally down-to-Earth cool person who loves cheap ‘za!” to the world!
McDonald's Big Mac umbrella
What is it: An umbrella with an all-over photo of the classic Big Mac.
How much: $12.99
You can almost smell the secret sauce wafting from this ultra close-up photo of the Big Mac. It’s the pop-up style of umbrella, which the website boasts: “Comfortable covers two people”.
Auntie Anne's shower curtain
What is it: A shower curtain depicting a cartoon world of pretzels.
How much: $60
Auntie Anne’s, a mainstay of mall food courts, sells what could be the most butter-soaked pretzels in town. You can wash off some of the savory oils (both the pretzels and your own) under the cover of this whimsical shower curtain. The artwork, titled “A Twisted Day”, is also available printed on a pair of (canvas) slip-on shoes, in case you thought Domino’s had a lock on footwear.
Taco Bell hot sauce balloons
What is it: Balloons in the shape of Taco Bell’s sauce packets.
How much: $20 for a set of three
We’ve covered Taco Bell Cantina’s private parties on this site before, where these sweet babies were part of the decoration. The size of small pillows, you can inscribe your own witty messages on the blank areas. You can attach them to sticks (included), inflate them with helium (not included), or fill them with real hot sauce (also not included or encouraged).
Huge inflatable bottle of Hidden Valley Ranch
What is it: A 6-foot, 5-inch inflatable simulation of a ranch dressing bottle.
How much: $150
Complete with tethers and air blower, this massive Hidden Valley Ranch decoration could be placed in your front yard alongside Santa Claus at Christmas. You do not, of course, have to limit its use to holiday cheer. You can just have it in your bedroom, greeting you each morning.
Heinz / Kraft products luggage
What is it: Hard-shell luggage bearing the branding of sauces or mac and cheese.
How much: $158.50 apiece
You will either look like a giant fan of these products, or look like you are transporting huge containers of ketchup.
The Kraft/Heinz product website describes the ketchup luggage with: “Everyone will want to ‘ketchup’ with you while you are rolling this luggage!” The mac and cheese describer assures you: “You will not look ‘cheesy’ rolling this luggage through the airport.” Of the mustard, they write: “This luggage is carry-on sized with a hard shell and rotating wheels.” They could not think of a mustard joke, and we will not bother to!
White Castle hamburger-scented candle
What is it: A candle that will make your room smell like a hamburger.
How much: $10
It’s unclear if this White Castle candle smells like hamburger meat, or like the the meat combined with the bed of steamed onions each White Castle burger is cooked over. According to the website, 100% of the profits from the candles go to Autism Speaks, so you can satisfy your curiosity while giving to a great cause!
Popeye's Fried Chicken "Biscuithead"
What is it: A huge, wearable foam biscuit.
How much: $21.25
First off: WOW. This thing looks real. The temptation to smear the wearing of this foam wonder with butter would be huge. The Popeye’s website says it’s perfect for “parades and other promotional events”, but why stop there? Officiate a wedding wearing it! Show it to a pond-full of ducks and see if they take the bait!
Krispy Kreme lip balm
What is it: “Glazed doughnut” flavor lip balm.
How much: $.99
Cracking through Krispy Kreme’s glazed doughnut frosting is a big treat, but just smearing your lips with one of the doughnuts and just leaving it there doesn’t sound great. However, it’s under a dollar.
What is it: An Arby’s “We have the meats” slogan-themed bicycle
How much: $395
This is a mystery. The Arby’s website description simply says “Arby’s bike”. No dimensions, make, or thought process stated. They just throw down the gauntlet. “It’s a bike themed around how you can eat every slain animal in one place, and it will cost you 400 dollars after shipping.” says Arby’s. “What more do you need to know, princess?”
These are just some of the things we found poking around. Have fun turning your own home into a branding wonderland!