Albertsons Gives a Food’s Eye View of Grocery Retail


Sincerely, Custom Decorated Cake


In one recent Ad Of The Week we met a talking vacation resort. Now it’s the turn of talking meals, as grocery giant Albertsons unveils its “Sincerely, Albertsons” campaign, in which the ads are narrated by… the food! Food in general, as in the 30 second hero ad which kicks off the campaign, or particular items of food, like the decorated cake which narrates this 15-second spot.

Albertsons and agency Anomalty are focusing on the food as the unifying factor across the brand’s plethora of identities and sub-brands. Albertsons has a history of mergers and acquisitions both large and small, including Safeways as well as the Albertsons chain itself. The broader “Sincerely” campaign features both Albertsons and Safeways branded ads – with no unified brand identity the company hopes to set itself apart by a distinctive approach to high quality, authentic food.

The initial weirdness of the cheery “I’m food” voiceover may be what’s keeping the 30 second ad just below 4-Stars on the Test Your Ad database. But the 15-second decorated cake ad does break that barrier, landing at 4.2-Stars with a Exceptional short-term Spike Rating too. It’s a fine illustration of the campaign’s potential to delight audiences.

Showing a “food’s eye view” of the retail world has one big benefit – it puts the focus on the ways people enjoy food and the special part it can play in our lives. The cake spot does this nicely, taking us in 15 seconds from the cake’s decoration with frosting to its starring role in a child’s birthday party. That means plenty of human connection and between-ness, and an ad which puts a smile on people’s faces.

Given how much of a social role food plays, it’s easy to see how the “Sincerely” campaign could work as a platform around different holidays, different occasions, and among different demographics. There’s a huge amount of flexibility built into the concept. The 15-second decorated cake execution is on one level very straightforward, but that belies the amount of strategic thinking that lies behind the idea. “Sincerely, Albertsons” is a way to create a united feel across a diverse umbrella brand.

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