Ever since the Stagg EKG Electric Kettle launched in 2017, Fellow has been on a mission to provide products that aren’t like anything else in the market and create a better, brighter morning for our customers. We strive to surprise and delight customers in unique ways through all of our products and services. One method we designed to achieve this was by creating a hidden video game within our unassuming electric kettles! Because the specialty coffee industry can be intimidating, we intentionally positioned our brand to be approachable and human to counter that inaccessibility. What better way to do that than to hold a friendly competition through a game you can play on your coffee kettle?
Within every Fellow electric kettle is Wormy, our take on the classic Snake game. Players can use the temperature dial to control the wormy on the LCD screen and eat 40 Fellow bow ties–our brand logo–as fast as possible. The Wormy World Championship was a social media campaign that challenged players to see how fast they could finish the game, with a variety of prizes offered for the speediest players. Contestants had one week to achieve their fastest score time.
Our goal for the Wormy World Championship was to engage with core customers who are also loyal followers on Instagram. Through this gamification strategy, Fellow built a sense of community for owners of our electric kettle and introduced a playful way to connect and interact with our product that no other homeware company offers.
The pre-launch teaser kicked off on National Video Game Day (July 8th), connecting our Stagg EKG Kettles with a hidden video game to a cultural consumer moment. While the campaign was social-first, the content was distributed across our homepage, blog, and email channels. Planning for Wormy Week was done months in advance, with every social post mapped out to ensure organization during the high-velocity week. Live-time content was published daily to build momentum during the contest. The range of creatives included live leaderboards, user-generated content (UGC), tips and tricks, and even an interview with a previous winner from the last time Wormy World Championships was held.
Our lean team of three had individualized roles, divvying up the execution of daily tasks. One person was in charge of publishing creatives and ensuring all deliverables were completed. Another person updated the daily leaderboards and was responsible for community management in DMs or in the comments section. The third person created all other necessary creatives, wrote copy, and procured UGC during the contest.
In terms of logistics, contestants submitted their scores through a Google Form with their name, time of completion, and photo evidence of their scores. This information was linked onto a Google Spreadsheet where we could organize the top 10 score times, which would be updated on a daily leaderboard that was posted on Fellow’s Instagram. This form was linked in our IG Stories and our blog post relating to Wormy Week. The top three winners would receive fellowproducts.com store credit as well as wormy-themed goodies, such as a giant gummy worm. The top ten fastest times would receive a custom Carter Move Mug with Wormy-themed graphics. These prizes were conceptualized to be oddly amusing, again highlighting the whimsical nature of the event.
There were several obstacles that we faced throughout the duration of the event. Due to the quick turnaround times that would be needed for creatives and the live daily leaderboards, our team did not depend on our in-house designers to create graphics. Instead, our social team took ownership of creatives. Two of our members utilized Canva to build low-fi graphics that cohesively matched the whimsical aesthetic of the Wormy game. This allowed us to create 10-15 IG Story frames every day of the event. However, our IG Feed posts were stylized creatives that were beautifully shot in studio to optimize our curated newsfeed. Feed posts for Wormy Week were meant to showcase and highlight our electric kettles while our IG Story posts would build energy and excitement around the event itself. Because the majority of tasks had to be completed live time, the team had to be extremely organized and touch base every morning.
All in all, this event was held primarily using low-investment tools, tying into the theme of approachability and fun that this event and Fellow as a whole strive to embody. Yet even though our approach was simple, we churned out a vast amount of high-quality creatives to successfully build a competitive, upbeat experience.
Overall, the 2022 Wormy World Championships was a success with a total of over 500 entries from around the world for the duration of Wormy Week. We saw a strengthened investment from hyper-loyal Fellow fans who returned to compete again from our Championships held in 2020 and heavily interacted with our posts.
We also set out to influence customers to have a deeper engagement with our product. As a result, the competition increased the duration of time users spend interacting with our product, with 10% of those who submitted times having scores of 10+ minutes. This event also raised awareness for the wormy game, helping Stagg EKG owners who previously did not know of the game to discover it for the first time. We had received DMs attesting that this discovery made them fall in love with their kettle all over again.
From a performance perspective, there was a substantial lift in engagement on our Instagram page due to the event, driving an average of 80% in completion rate for IG Stories and a 3% lift in engagement rate. Although not one of our primary goals, we also increased reach and awareness of our brand and product through UGC posted by contestants throughout the event. The inherent humor embedded in this campaign also drove positive sentiment through the contest, whether participants shared advice or heckled each other in the comments.
Taking all of this into account, we believe that Wormy Week achieved all of our intended goals and more.
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