Welcome to Will It Stick? podcast, where hosts Melissa and Alexis cover creative advertising campaigns, PR stunts, and marketing activations that brands of all shapes and sizes pull, and dive into the research and data to understand if it worked.
Oscar Mayer, in case you don’t know, is an American meat and cold cut production company, owned by Kraft Heinz and based in Chicago. The brand actually started way back in 1883, and can you guess who started it? OSCAR F. MAYER. He was an actual person. He actually was a German immigrant who moved to the U.S. from Bavaria in 1873 at 14 years old. He began working in Detroit as a butcher boy, and not long after that he moved to Chicago and began working in the retail industry. In 1883,at 24-years old Oscar and his brother Gottfried leased a meat market on the northside of Chicago and that’s where they started selling things like bratwurst, liverwurst, and weißwurst… all German meats because they really focused in on selling to the German neighborhoods around their Chicago meat market, The market was called Oscar F. Mayer & Bro. Poor Gottfried…he just got BRO. Guess how much revenue they earned on their first day open for business? $59. That is $1,628 in purchasing power in 2022. That’s pretty dang good for day 1 of your butcher business! At the time, pork cuts cost about 8-12 cents per pound.
Suddenly, their little meat market business was popping. The expanded the storefront and began sponsoring local events, like the 1893 Chicago World’s Fair. By 1900 they had 43 employees and they were delivering their meat across the entire city of Chicago. That’s when they had an idea. Do you know what that idea was Lex?
BRAND THEIR MEAT. I mean why not? At the time, no one else had done it. Meat was just, well, meat. You just went to your local butcher and picked up your meat, there were no brands. Oscar was smart. So in 1904 they branded their meat as “Oscar Mayer & Co… dang, poor Gottfriend – now he doesn’t even get the BRO! He’s downgraded from Bro to Co. But really they actually made this concept – branding meats – an industry-wide trend. In 1929 they introduced that yellow brand and it has stuck ever since.
SO now we get to the good stuff. The things we all know and love Oscar Mayer for. In this episode we discuss:
- The Oscar Mayer Weinermobile
- The Dream Job as a Hottdogger
- The Infamous Oscar Mayer Jingles
- Oscar Mayer Face Masks
- Lyft & Oscar Mayer Partnership
- Oscar Mayer Weinermobile on AirBnB
- And so much more….
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Check out some of the great articles we sourced to gather all the facts for this episode.