I don’t know about you, but commercials can often take me back to my formative years as quickly as any song or movie can. That is why we will continue this semi-regular feature on ’80s commercials that I consider particularly memorable, noteworthy, or forgotten. Television commercials were much more influential back when we were forced to watch them without the luxury to fast-forward through and/or stream shows with limited or no interruptions. This issue will cover the Teddy Grahams commercials which began in 1988.
In a snack market that was full of countless varieties of cookies and crackers, Nabisco’s Teddy Grahams exploded onto the scene in 1988. Yes, I am talking about those little bear-shaped graham cracker snacks which have become a favorite for many children (and possibly some adults as well). They were originally available in your choice of cinnamon, chocolate or honey flavors. To say Teddy Grahams were a popular snack food would be a major understatement. They only became the biggest new-product success in that industry in more than 25 years! They went on to sell over $150 million in the first year ranking as the third best-selling cookie only after Oreo and Chips Ahoy (which were both also from Nabisco).
The American Marketing Association recognized Nabisco’s achievement in 1989 when it named Teddy Grahams one of the Best New Products of the Year. Teddy Grahams beat out two other Nabisco finalists, Fudge Covered Oreos and Ritz Bits, to win that coveted award being selected for their “marketing innovativeness, technological innovativeness, market structure innovativeness, lasting value and societal impact.”
I was a little old for Teddy Grahams at the time when they were introduced, but I couldn’t avoid seeing the catchy commercials. It’s the commercials that I remember best and, if you watched a lot of cartoons in the late-80s, I bet you just might, too. They featured a take on the Elvis Presley song “Teddy Bear” and had to have a major impact on the success. Singing bears and yummy graham cracker treats, what more could a kid want? Here is that original 1988 commercial for Teddy Grahams…
I know this jingle is going to be stuck in my head for the rest of the day now. I guess that means it’s doing its job. I apologize in advance if it gets stuck in yours, too. In case you want to sing along in your best Elvis impersonation, the lyrics go:
We just want to eat, tasty Teddy Grahams.
Scrumptious bunch of bite sized bears, full of golden graham.
Oh let them be, your Teddy Grahams.
Just want to eat… those Teddy Grahams!
Here is a different commercial from 1989 which uses a slightly updated version of the same jingle song…
There you go, another trip down memory lane in the form of TV commercials. Teddy Grahams have gone on to remain a very popular children’s snack to this day. That original commercial song is still firmly ingrained in my head over 30 years later, so that has to say something as well. And yep, it’s another little gift from the great decade of the ’80s. [And in my best Elvis impression] Thank you, thank you very much.
Check out these other great features on TRN:
- CD Shopping on New Year’s Day in the ’90s
- Showbiz Pizza Versus Garfield and The California Raisins
- Cable Television in the 1980s
- The Beginnings of MTV
- Defining “Fair is Fair” in 1985 Films