retail news in context, analysis with attitude

by Kevin Coupe

Schenectady,New York-based Price Chopper has made an interesting marketing move ... the sponsorship of a Pandora radio station featuring music to which one can barbecue.

Pandora, for the uninitiated, is an online and free music service that offers themed stations. On my Pandora list, for example, there is everything from "New Orleans Jazz" to "Cajun and Zydeco" to "Frank Sinatra" and, of course, "Jimmy Buffett." All of these streaming stations are sponsored, though one has the option of paying a small fee to skip the commercials.

In Price Chopper's case, the station it is sponsoring is the "House of BBQ," and it features a mixture of old and new songs from the likes of Luke Bryan, Keith Urban and John Mellencamp ("Jack and Diane" is playing as I write this).

It is a great example of finding unusual ways to reach out to consumers ... though in the case of Price Chopper, its message may resonate less to people who don't have one of its stores anywhere nearby. (Like me.)

But I do think that it shows a willingness to think out of the traditional box, and to find new ways to connect with shoppers. Which is, in my opinion, an Eye-Opener.

KC's View: