2009’s most successful gum launch

March 8, 2010


The last 12 months have seen their fair share of social media campaigns for fast moving consumer goods (FMCG) brands. In Australia, we can remember the Pepsi ‘Refresh project’ and Crust Pizza’s #CrustFreePizzaFriday Twitter campaign among others.

Chewing gum is not typically what I would call the ‘hip’ thing in consumer land so launching a new gum would probably be quite challenging. However one company has managed to cut through the clutter successfully.

Wrigley launched in Australia its ‘5’ gum in mid 2009. According to a Wrigley ad featured in Convenience World (February/March 2010 issue), the company claims it to be ‘the most successful gum launch in 2009’ with the gum delivering $8.7 million in sales since the launch. It became the #2 brand in the gum category after just 11 weeks in the market.

This is what, in my humble opinion, made this launch so successful: 

  • The gum’s packaging is black (with a vibrant colour on the side for each flavour). This packaging really stuck in my head as it was the first black packaging for chewing gum I had seen. A few months later, Mentos launched it’s Aqua Kiss gum – with black packaging as well – and a small presence on Facebook (312 fans at time of writing)
  • Wrigley used a good marketing mix including advertising (see YouTube clip below), sampling, in-store point-of-sales and an online campaign called ‘5 Feed’

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Using social media to drive promotions and customer service

February 8, 2010


I really think more businesses are starting to ‘get’ the potential of social media and the way in which some businesses are using it is very impressive and clever.

For instance, we can all agree that the @BigPondTeam has really done some great things leveraging Twitter. Twitter is the perfect channel for having a whinge and I know from personal experience how some people love to whinge about Telstra and BigPond (I used to work at a Telstra Shop many moons ago). Then all of a sudden this big corporation replies to your frustrated tweet (and pretty quickly, I’ll add), asking if they can help. What? Is this the same company where people complain about being on hold for what seems like hours at a time?

The biggest surprise was the goodwill it generated quickly among Twitter and the trend of users going directly to the BigPond or Telstra Twitter profiles with problems instead of calling up or visiting a Telstra Shop.

Similarly, @StarlightCinemas decided to give away some free tickets to help promote their outdoor cinemas using Twitter. Not only does this work online, as winners are likely to engage and report via various profiles if they won but they are also likely to go offline and tell friends, family and colleagues they won, who will then ask them how it went. Basically driving word-of-mouth on and offline – so simple and yet so effective. I would love to know if their social media activity coincided with an increase in numbers for this year’s season.

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How online networking can change your life

November 11, 2009


Amanda LaporeWe’ve all heard stories of how online communities can impact people’s lives, like connecting with long lost friends, finding love, landing a new job, making business deals, etc. Recently something exciting happened to a friend of mine and all because of the power of tagging on social media.

My good friend Nathan, a finance manager for a leading retail chain, recently got invited to attend a swimwear photo shoot for DNA magazine at the Ivy pool bar in Sydney.

Not one to miss the opportunity of half-naked models, Nathan took along his trusty everyday digital camera. Excited about some of the shots and the great time he had, he promptly posted the photos to his Facebook page and diligently tagged the organiser, photographer and models.

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