Diana Bradley
Jun 9, 2022

How Kraft Heinz is marketing cheese-scented nail polish

Pinkies Out Polish launched on Tuesday morning and sold out just hours later. The brand says it’s part of a lifestyle, not a stunt.

Velveeta is engaging with people talking about the nail polish on social media.
Velveeta is engaging with people talking about the nail polish on social media.

Velveeta’s cheese-scented Pinkies Out Polish briefly sold out on Nails Inc.’s website just hours after it launched on Tuesday. 

The nail polish, made in partnership between the two brands, includes a cheese-scented red-and-yellow nail-polish duo for $15 in Finger Food and La Dolce Velveeta, plus That’s La Dolce Velveeta nail stickers for $4.99. It is for sale on Amazon.com and NailsInc.com while supplies last.

“The sentiment has overall been amazing, and the product is moving quickly, as predicted,” said Kelsey Rice, senior brand communications manager for Velveeta parent Kraft Heinz.

The collaboration is the latest part of Velveeta’s latest creative platform, La Dolce Velveeta, which is all about customers stepping out in a confident, unapologetic way to show the world that they’re living a life filled with outrageous pleasure.

“As we thought about the campaign, we loved the idea of ‘living pinkies out,’” said Rice. “This felt like a really cool, natural way we could co-create with our fans and give them a way to show the world they are living La Dolce Velveeta. We loved the physicality of that expression.”

She added that a nail-polish collaboration felt like the perfect opportunity to bring that idea to life. 

“It gives a reason to flash your pinky beyond just living,” said Rice. “It gives the nudge to live that lifestyle, and then there are the natural commonalities between those products — creamy texture, melty goodness — you can see those come through in a polish.”

Velveeta partnered with 20 influencers who are living the “la dolce Velveeta lifestyle” to introduce the polish, and the brand has been amplifying their voices through paid media. Images of RuPaul's Drag Race star and influencer Gia Gunn have been used for the campaign’s official marketing assets.


A post shared by GIA GUNN (@gia_gunn)

@yourbuscaptain Can’t seem to find where you at �� #SGBus #176 ♬ sonido original - Alexandra_ Gmn_��

@sooziethefoodie #ad ♬ original sound - Suzy

@stony_ley #ad Eat and live pinkies out with Velveeta Pinkies Out Nail Polish! @VELVEETA #velveeta #velveetacheese #cheese #nailpolish #stonyley #firsthitcheers #asmr #asmrvideo #asmrsounds #asmrtiktok #satisfying #Mukbang #eat #food #fy #fyp ♬ original sound - S.Ley

“We want to be authentic in the way we bring this campaign to life with those influencers,” said Rice.

Velveeta is also leaning into PR, working with agency partner Alison Brod Marketing + Communications. In terms of tactics, the firm did not give a media outlet an exclusive, pitching the embargoed story generally to outlets focused on food, beverage and lifestyle.

Velveeta is engaging with people talking about the nail polish on social media. 

“Some are like, ‘Is this for real?’ So we are reinforcing it is real and here is where you can find it,” said Rice. “For those who say cheese scent isn’t coming through strongly, we are reinforcing the ‘how.’ You need to paint it, let it dry and then the cheese scent comes through.”

The polish was covered by USA Today, Food & Wine Magazine, New York Post, Allure, Yahoo News, The Sun, Mashed and Delish. It was also discussed on Today.

“This is a great example of how overall we have been focusing on making a big shift from historically generic advertising in an effort to be more modern,” said Rice. “We are reinfusing energy and life into some of our more iconic brands like Velveeta so they can become the true cultural icons that we know they can be.” 

Kraft Heinz has switched up its PR agency relationships in recent months. The CPG giant named Havas Formula as PR AOR for its Philadelphia Cream Cheese, Kraft Singles, Capri Sun, Just Crack an Egg, Kraft Real Mayo, Kraft Salad Dressing and MiO brands at the start of the year.

Kraft Heinz also retained Alison Brod Marketing + Communications, which it has worked with since 2015, as PR AOR for Kraft Mac & Cheese, Velveeta, Jet-Puffed, Colliders and new account Delimex. Alison Brod Marketing + Communications was the incumbent agency on Philadelphia Cream Cheese. 

This year, Kraft Heinz also appointed Zeno Group as the primary PR U.S. agency partner for its brands Lunchables, Oscar Mayer and Heinz. Egami Group, the multicultural, minority-owned communications firm that Zeno bought a stake in and formed a strategic partnership with last year, is supporting the agency’s work on the account.


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