The pork industry’s most recent brand campaign — Don’t be blah — has generated more than $103.3 million in total pork sales at the retail level.

That’s according to a tool developed by private-sector and university agriculture economists to calculate the per-capita-pork expenditures as a way of measuring the ad campaign’s activity in target markets. Economists were able to track actual pork sales from March 2005 to November 2007 in the target markets using pork-package bar-code data collected from retail stores.

Launched in 2005, “The Other White Meat. Don’t be blah” brand campaign rolled out in Atlanta, Chicago, Dallas, Denver, Philadelphia and Sacramento. In December 2006, Denver and Sacramento were dropped, while Houston and St. Louis were added in May 2007. The campaign’s tactics were to increase pork sales by helping position pork as a solution to the everyday meal-rut.

The study evaluated the campaign according to awareness, image and impact measures. The National Pork Board also measured changes in consumer expenditures that are attributable to promotion, advertising and public relations.

During the March 2005 to November 2007 period, the producer share of retail dollars was 29.72 percent, according to USDA. Based on those figures, for every $1 producers invested in the program, their return was $2.23.

“The target markets were created as a proof of concept — a test to see if pork sales would increase in a more efficient manner if we invested more dollars and increased message frequency,” says John Green, NPB’s strategic marketing director. “In markets like Atlanta, Chicago and Dallas, we were rewarded with increased total revenues for pork. In the future, we need to look at target demographic areas that have similar consumption patterns.”

The “Don’t be blah” campaign will go nationwide this year.  Through a combination of high-visibility print and online advertising, NPB will contemporize the message and promote pork to a new, younger generation.