Cannes Lions

Heinz Bottleneck

RETHINK, Toronto / KRAFT / 2022

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As Covid-19 restrictions started to ease across Canada in summer 2021, people were doing something they hadn’t done in a year: jumping in the car and heading to cottages, parks, and destinations. And a huge part of those destinations - cookouts and BBQs.

With consumers re-emerging from pandemic lockdowns and once again enjoying their favourite summer activities, our challenge was to inject Heinz into these summer moments in a modern, unexpected, and ownable way that would create talk value with the goal of keeping Heinz top of mind.


Heinz Ketchup goes through rigorous tests to ensure the quality and taste is the exact same in every bottle. One of those tests ensures Heinz viscosity allows it to pour at the same speed every time – 0.045km/hour to be exact. Said another way, Heinz = Slow. So, we wanted to show consumers that this summer, going slow = a good thing.

We partnered with Waze, and used their app’s built-in navigation system and speed-tracking system to target Canadians that were stuck in long weekend traffic

Using real-time traffic data, we tracked the speed of traffic: if traffic went at the speed of Heinz Ketchup, the car on the app would change to a bottle of Heinz, and a voucher for free ketchup and a Burger King Whopper would automatically be sent to their inbox (to avoid any driving distractions).


For the first time in over a year, roads would be packed with cars on their way to cottages, BBQs, and get-togethers. One way people attempt to get around summer traffic is by using navigation apps like Waze, which highlights traffic with a red line to indicate things are moving slowly.


The campaign kicked off right before the July long weekend, when summer traffic is at its heaviest. We blasted our message across our social channels with a hero video explaining the campaign, which received earned media attention and had high shareability online. It ran across all our platforms: Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and Youtube.

Digital OOH boards were strategically placed along highways in Toronto, Vancouver and Montreal. When traffic was heaviest, our long copy billboards shared a message to drivers stuck in traffic that featured our offer and how to unlock it. When traffic was lighter, we simply shared a generic brand message.

Drivers stuck in traffic often listen to music and podcasts to pass the time. Working with Spotify, we created radio ads and companion banner assets to further spread awareness of our message and offer.

We also worked with a range of micro-influencers to seed the campaign launch.


This was truly a high-performing brand awareness and recognition play for Heinz. The save rates of the takeover ads were 34%, vs. industry benchmarks of 22%.

The campaign achieved a whopping 147,730,225 PR impressions. Additionally, Spotify reached 606,932 impressions and attained an outstanding 97.4% audio completion rate.

Best of all, by hijacking slow moving roads, we were able to get 44% of Waze users caught in traffic to redeem a bottle of Heinz before heading to their cottage or BBQ.

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