NYC's FreshDirect Enlists Local Stars to Tout Brand

NEW YORK -- What do former New York City Mayor Ed Koch, celebrity chef Bobby Flay, and model Paulina Porizkova have in common? They all shop at, and now will be featured in new TV ads that break next week.

Three 30-second spots, via Gotham, New York, will build on the e-tailer's tagline, "Our food is fresh. Our customers are spoiled," breaking Feb. 6, reported Progressive Grocer's sister publication Brandweek. The spots depict FreshDirect delivery persons chatting up the personalities at their homes about FreshDirect. Ads will run on local cable stations, including Food Network, CNN, Bravo and Oxygen.

"This campaign is designed to showcase FreshDirect's fresh, delicious food and high standards for service, which ensures that all customers receive the star treatment," said Steve Michaelson, president of Long Island City, NY-based FreshDirect, which has more than 250,000 customers in New York and New Jersey. "Bobby Flay, Ed Koch, and Paulina Porizkova are perfect examples of New Yorkers who lead busy lives and have high expectations, just like our customers."

For the campaign, the company followed the model of several successful campaigns that featured a celebrity/personality. "One thing I saw firsthand during my time at and our work with William Shatner as well as my current association with Jenny Craig and the partnership with Kirstie Alley, was the power and influence that a strong personality can have on a brand," said Rick Braddock, chairman of FreshDirect and former chairman/CEO of

The TV push buttresses FreshDirect's ongoing outdoor, transit and online efforts. Fresh Direct did not disclose its media spend for the new campaign. Spending was $1.15 million January-September 2005, per TNS.
--Sonia Reyes, Brandweek
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