Cannes Lions

It Wasn't Me

GOODBY SILVERSTEIN & PARTNERS, San Francisco / CHEETOS / 2021

Awards:

2 Shortlisted Cannes Lions
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Overview

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Credits

Overview

Background

Cheetos was launching its new Crunch Pop Mix on Super Bowl Sunday; a cheesy combination of Cheetos Crunchy and Cheetos Popcorn in one bag. The problem? Many other iconic food brands were launching their new products on the same night, such as Pringles, M&Ms and more. In a nutshell, we were faced with the ultimate food brand fight night. So we needed a novel way to drive the trial of our snack, not theirs. Not only that, we needed to position Cheetos’ new product as ‘irresistible’, and make them the most talked about brand on game day -- all to ultimately beat our sales goals for Crunch Pop Mix.

Idea

Cheetos was launching its new Crunch Pop Mix on Super Bowl Sunday. The problem? Many other iconic food brands were launching their new products on the same night. But while they were all pushing people to grab their latest products off the shelf, we let people grab the new Cheetos right out of the TV screen. How? We harnessed Snapchat’s scan technology that can typically recognize static objects like plant species and dog breeds, and pushed it even further. For the first time ever, we got Snapchat to input every frame of a TV commercial into their camera’s machine learning software - all 1440 frames of our ad. So, when any Snapchatter held the app up to our 60-second Super Bowl spot and held down on their screen, the camera’s AI could instantly recognize the content and unlock an AR experience. And, most importantly, a free bag of Cheetos.

Strategy

The brief for the launch of Cheetos Crunch Pop Mix was to position it as ‘irresistible’. Not exactly a groundbreaking proposition, right? So we dug a little deeper. For years, we’d been noticing the brand’s core demographic - Cheetos-adoring millennials and Gen Zers - were confessing online to stealing their loved one’s Cheetos. This became even more prevalent with everyone stuck at home in 2020. We wanted to focus on this stealing behavior to highlight the irresistibility of Cheetos’ new product, but first we needed to know it wasn’t just something die-hard fans do. So, we conducted a study with the Morning Consult that revealed what we suspected, and more: Almost 50% of all adult Americans steal their loved one’s snacks, with 25% doing it on the regular. And with that, we put this social behavior of stealing Cheetos at the heart of our Super Bowl spot, expressed via “It

Execution

Cheetos Snap to Steal existed exclusively on Snapchat and could only be accessed when our Super Bowl commercial played live on TV. All a Snapchatter had to do was open the app, hold it up to our ad and hold down on their screen to activate the camera’s scanning function. Seeing that it was the Cheetos commercial, the camera’s AI instantly unlocked an AR experience - a 3D hand appearing to steal a bag of Crunch Pop Mix right out of the ad via a futuristic portal. Users could then click on the 3D bag to receive a coupon for free Crunch Pop Mix, redeemable at their local store. There wasn’t a traditional snapcode in sight. Instead, we let people know about it through a targeted game day Snap lens that gave a timely tutorial just hours before our commercial aired. We also ran How-To videos across TikTok, Instagram and

Outcome

In a 60-second window (the length of our commercial) more than 50,000 bags were ‘stolen’ out of the ad, traffic to Cheetos’ loyalty site, tastyrewards.com, increased by 2,500%, and the brand saw a 567% uplift in new members registering interest in future product trials. Those who missed out on stealing a bag didn’t seem deterred. A consumer survey by Influential revealed Cheetos Crunch Pop Mix ranked #1 as the product people intended to buy most out of every product advertised on Super Bowl Sunday. How did we do in the world of Snapchat? Cheetos Snap to Steal is their most successful scan-to-AR activation to date, with click-through engagement 21 times higher than benchmark (63% vs 3%). Not only that, Snapchat says this project “has pushed [their] Scan technology forward and has created a whole new offering for brands in the future.”

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