General Mills banks on in-person connection with Cinnamon Toast Crunch pop-up

By Kristine Sherred

- Last updated on GMT

A rendering of the pop-up experience prominently featuring the brand's recently appointed mascot, the Cinnamoji. Pic: General Mills
A rendering of the pop-up experience prominently featuring the brand's recently appointed mascot, the Cinnamoji. Pic: General Mills

Related tags Cinnamon toast crunch General mills Cereal Cereal boxes Pop Tarts Kellogg's Promotion event Marketing branding

General Mills has hosted sensory pop-ups in three US cities to honor the new packaging for one of its most popular brands.

The first occurred in Santa Monica, California, in July, followed by a second in Houston, Texas in August – where there was a line out the door, company spokesman Mike Siemienas told BakeryandSnacks. The final installment will run August 22-25 in Chicago, about 20 miles northwest of the city at Woodfield Mall in Schaumburg.

“Enjoying Cinnamon Toast Crunch is a multisensory experience – from the amazing cinnamon taste, to the delicious crunchy texture and epic combination of cinnamon sugar cinnaswirls, so we wanted to create an experience that brings the best parts of CTC to life for our fans of all ages,” ​said Siemienas.

At the events, guests walk through four different rooms, each focused on a different sensory experience: taste, sight, smell and feel. The Cinna-Swirl Vortex, for instance, spritzes a cinnamon-scented aroma, while the Cinna-Crunch Zone features a ‘crunchy’ floor.

Refreshed and Cinnatized


The existing packaging features the brand’s multicolored logo on a white background, with muted cinnamon swirls in the background.

The refresh – announced on July 18 – keeps the purple, blue, green and red lettering but swirls those colors into the background, too.

Cinnamojis, the brand’s recently appointed mascot, also hold a prominent place on the new boxes.

Of course, no Cinnamon Toast Crunch experience would be complete without a bowl of cereal. The Cinna-Milk Whirl’d room offers a taste of that iconic ‘Cinnamilk,’ and a gift shop offers a variety of themed merchandise.

“Cinnamon Toast Crunch is focused on bringing cereal lovers exciting and new ways to enjoy their favorite cereal,”​ said Susan Pitt, director of marketing and communications for the cereal division.

“The Cinnaverse Experience paired with Cinnamon Toast Crunch’s new look is all about bringing our fans a fresh, new way to fuel more fun, more color and most importantly – more crunch.”

The events were designed to appeal to all ages, with the Instagram tag, #UnlockTheCinnaverse showing kids, teens and adults indulging in the experience.

Experiential is the new commercial

General Mills launched a similar immersive experience in 2017.

“We hosted a Cinnamon Toast Crunch pop-up drive-thru near the Grand Canyon, and with much success, we decided to expand the activation into the following year by launching a mobile CTC airstream that traveled to major road trip destinations across the nation along U.S Route 66,”​ Siemienas told this site.

The RV offered guests a chance to order ‘Fuel Your Crazy’ menu items, unique to each city on its route.

“While we’ve hosted many different kinds of events for consumers, The Cinnaverse Experience is something totally unique,”​ he added.

Immersive events

Pop-up experiences have made a splash in cities worldwide in recent years, with clothing brands and new-wave art museums buying into the trend. Other food brands have also tried the in-person approach.

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