How TCA’s “Nasty Characters” Drove Tradeshow Traffic for Client Birko

by David Heitman

When our client Birko needed a clever way to stand out at the United Fresh produce show in San Diego, they looked to us for help.

Within the meat processing industry, Birko is well known for its expertise in fighting foodborne illnesses such as E. coli, Listeria and Salmonella. These pathogens “crop” up in produce, too.

Even though Birko has several customers in the fresh cut produce market, they were not very well known in the industry. We wanted them to make a splash at this prominent trade show.

Enter our original cartoons, “Sal Monella,” “Liz Teria,” and “E. Coli,” a trio of nasty characters that often cause chaos in produce plants. Fortunately, Birko’s chemistry and equipment can successfully fight off this infamous gang.  To help produce companies attending the show understand the Birko message, we created a pre-show postcard inviting readers to “Fight Back with Birko.” We also showcased the gang on Birko’s trade booth, and created an animated ad for key produce trade magazines. And, we made Sal, Liz and E. the stars of a new produce brochure.

The crowds went wild!  Many people who visited Birko’s booth remembered the characters from the postcard they’d received and one booth visitor even asked to have her picture taken with Sal, Liz and E.

For such troublesome characters, they certainly were a great success for Birko.