Tropicana was experiencing softening sales and looking to create a cultural moment to spark excitement. We noticed how orange juice has always been left out of one of the oldest breakfast traditions: milk on cereal. And after discovering that millions were actually pouring OJ on their cereal instead of milk, we decided to make Tropicana Crunch: the first cereal ever to pair perfectly with OJ.
We stumbled upon a social conversation and, ultimately, a data point that we had never heard of and blew us away. Yes, orange juice has always been the breakfast staple, but for 15M Americans, it's their cereal topper of choice. It was, to us, an odd behavior, but one that sparked a passionate debate. Is it tasty? Is it gross? We knew that whether you loved it or hated it, the curiosity would make you want to try it (and talk about it).
We selected National Orange Juice Day (5/4/22) to drop Tropicana Crunch Cereal, available via order on a website. Social media teasers stirred interest, as well as pre-seeding with media outlets.
One of the more challenging pieces of this activation was to figure out how to manufacture and develop a cereal that would pair with the citrus and acidity and hold up to orange juice. Through multiple rounds of R&D and taste tests, we found our honey almond granola cereal that paired perfectly with Tropicana.
Social content, coupled with earned media buzz, was our main driver of the giveaway. The creative was a light-hearted take on traditional cereal marketing tropes, using our Sunny the Orange mascot, and playful copy to stoke the taste test: "The greatest, weirdest taste test of our generation is here. Supplies limited so get yours today!"
Tropicana Crunch sparked a social and media taste test debate that helped Tropicana sales jump 4.3% in the two weeks following the launch. We also received nearly 4 billion earned media impressions. And when thousands of boxes of the cereal sold out in less than seven minutes, we knew we created a cultural phenomenon.
We attribute the success to our unique insight (OJ is a quintessential morning drink, but some people use it as their cereal topper) and brand opportunity to provide a solution (Tropicana could manufacture the first cereal created to perfectly pair with OJ). The simplicity of the idea and how it came to life drove benchmark-breaking results, including sales volume and earned media impressions, with coverage in top-tier news outlets like The Today Show, Access Hollywood, CNN and Food & Wine. It became a cultural flashpoint with consumers and press. And of course, the cereal sold out in less than seven minutes.
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