Cheech & Chong to sell Fiber One’s new “magic” brownies

What do you get when you mix a cannabis-loving comedy duo from the ‘80s, “magic” brownies, and….fiber? Why, the new viral marketing campaign for General Mills, of course! The company is using Facebook, Twitter and YouTube to help its new video go viral and promote the release of the new, 90-calorie Fiber One brownies.In the commercial, set up to look like a movie trailer, comedians Cheech and Chongdrive around in a van filled with “magic” brownies on route to the Flaming Pole music festival. There’s a bit of a storyline involving the cops, hippie thieves, and ends with the duo’s revelation that the “magic” in the brownies is actually fiber.The announcer states, “Because now that you’re getting older, you need a new kind of magic from your brownies,” to which Chong replies, “this is the weirdest movie ever, man.” Then there’s a picture of the box of Fiber One 90-calorie brownies and the snapper: Taste the magic…the magic of fiber.

Because of its stoner undertones and the fact that General Mills is the home of the wholesome Pillsbury Doughboy and Betty Crocker, this commercial was designed as an online-only advertisement. “We’re kind of throwing it out there, and seeing the power of viral,” company spokeswoman Lisa Tomassen told the press. With only a few banner ads and a microsite backing the video, General Mills is really banking on word-of-mouth promotion.

And I guess that worked, because here I am writing about it, posting it to my Facebook wall, and tweeting it out to my followers. I have to put my foot in my mouth a bit, because I just wrote a blog post where I commented that controversy is best used in ads promoting causes, not products. But I actually like this ad. Yes, it’s stupid stoner humor, but it’s definitely creative and not too offensive, in my opinion. What do you guys think?


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