New York – A broad range of initiatives disclosed today by Monster includes a national cross-promotion with Kellogg’s snack brands, an expanded presence in airport terminals worldwide through Dufry and its Hudson Group unit, and a more selective approach to selling select product series.
The company also announced a collaboration with professional gamer Johnathan Wendel to create Monster’s first line of audio gaming products, which will bear Wendel’s Fatal1ty brand. The first product will be a stereo headphone pair with removable boom gaming mic. It’s due in the fall.
In other product initiatives, Monster announced:
** $29.99-suggested “selfie cases” for the iPhone 6 and 6S and Samsung Galaxy 5 and 6. The cases, which are Monster’s first phone cases, hold the phones and stick to most smooth, glossy vertical surfaces, including windows, so users can take selfies without carrying a selfie stick. They’re available Aug. 1 and will be followed by selfie cases for other phone models.
** a new Universal Control Talk headphone cable with in-line remote control to control more functions on more Android and Windows phones than before. It will continue to control an iPhone’s hands-free and volume functions but not track advance. The cable with three-button remote will be included with 75 percent of Monster’s headphone SKUs starting next month.
** an expansion of the 24K Gold line of gold-look headphones from one over-ear SKU to include four more models, all in rose gold instead of regular gold. Four new models, due in late fall primarily in online stores, consist of a $229-suggested over-ear SKU, a $249 on-ear SKU, a $349 wireless model, and a $149 in-ear model.
Monster also plans a gold-grille version of its Backfloat water-resistant floating Bluetooth speaker at a suggested $229.
In a back-to-school cross-promotion running from July through October, Kellogg’s snack-food packages in big-box stores that sell CE will feature Kellogg’s characters wearing Monster N-Tune headphones. Snack-food purchasers will get a chance to win a pair of N-Tune headphones. Consumers also get a $10 coupon good for N-Tune headphones and multiple free music downloads from select musicians. The promotion “will expose our brand to the mass public,” head monster Noel Lee told TWICE.
In-store promotion materials include cardboard two-dimensional school busses carrying Kellogg’s characters as well as a shipper displaying the snacks. The company also hopes to put POP material in the snack lines of CE stores, Lee said.
As part of a new selective-distribution strategy now underway, the company is targeting its lower priced N-Tune headphone line to value merchants such as Walmart and Target, while its Sound Stage line of Wi-Fi wireless multiroom-audio speakers will be sold through Best Buy, customer installers, and independent specialty retailers. The DNA Pro 2.0 series is targeted to specialty audio, pro audio and airport stores with an assisted sales floor and product-demo capabilities.
As part of a separate program to expand its airport presence, Monster struck a global partnership with Dufry and its Hudson Group unit to expand Monster’s product lineup beyond U.S. and Canada stores to stores worldwide starting around September.
Under the new program, Dufry will be the exclusive seller of Monster’s premium headphones and audio in airport newsstands and convenience stores. The stores will also get access to an expanded selection of Monster products that will now include sports and fitness headphones and one of three Sound Stage Wi-Fi speakers.
Monster’s in-store presence will also be raised with Monster-dedicated fixturing and training programs that are part of Monster’s M6 retail program. The fixturing will create a near store-in-store look, said Hudson Group buyer John Bradley.
In the U.S. and Canada, Monster products currently appear in 240 Hudson News stores and 22 Tech On The Go stores. The expanded partnership has the potential to bring Monster products to as many as 2,800 airport stores in 68 countries, including Dufry duty-free stores.