Reading a good book can be an immersive experience — but wouldn’t it be even better if that book was paired with a special culinary journey?
In a new campaign, KitchenAid and Digitas partnered with Reese’s Book Club, owned by Reese Witherspoon’s media company Hello Sunshine, to launch a four-episode digital series called “Eat the Book.”
In each episode, one author previously featured in Reese’s Book Club and a chef or mixologist joins host Christina Milian to create a dish or drink inspired by the book, using KitchenAid cookware and appliances. Episodes air Thursdays via Hello Sunshine and Reese’s Book Club YouTube and social media channels.
“Our goal with Eat the Book was to deepen the relationship between Reese’s Book Club authors and our community, while remaining focused on female centered stories,” Erica Green SVP, executive creative director of Hello Sunshine told Campaign US. “As we developed the concept for the series, it was important for us to make sure the beloved KitchenAid brand was incorporated into the series in organic, thoughtful, and strategic ways.”
Featured books include “From Scratch” by Tembi Locke, “The Proposal” by Jasmine Guillory, “Where the Crawdads Sing” by Delia Owens, and “The Jetsetters” by Amanda Eyre Ward. The all-star culinary lineup includes chefs Genevieve Gergis, Karyn Tomlinson, Kim Prince and Sara Kramer.
“We all want a deeper sense of connection, because that has been missing in this pandemic,” Priyanka Rathore, brand communication manager for KitchenAid said. “This gives you that inspiration to come on a Zoom call with your friends, satisfy your creative urges and put that out in the kitchen.”
“Eat the Book” isn’t KitchenAid’s first original content series. Last year, the brand teamed up with Ventureland, Vox Creative and Digitas to create the documentary short, “A Woman’s Place,” in August. The doc, which is streaming on Hulu, examined the inequalities women face in the culinary industry.
Original content directly connects the consumer to the brand’s message leading to new engagement and, ultimately, brand loyalty, according to Rathore. It also gives brands an opportunity to continue connecting with their audiences on TV as people sour on interruptive commercials and instead opt for ad-free streaming services.
“There’s no uninterrupted ads, no direct product messaging or any other ulterior interests,” Rathore said. “Without all of that, it helps consumers truly get a sense of who we are as a brand. It also helps us live up to our purpose, which is to create possibilities in the kitchen.”
Demand for home appliances has increased as consumers have been stuck at home during the pandemic. Sales for Whirlpool, the owner of brands like KitchenAid and Maytag, rose 3.9% to $5.30 billion in the third quarter.