Putting insight at the heart of the project, the data behind the campaign came from The Robins, SuperHeroes’ gen-z research panel, who informed how the team approached the project. With the content being released from July to September of 2023, the campaign continues to engage with the market the brand was keen to get on board.
LBB> When did your partnership with Stimorol first begin and what did you set out to achieve?
SuperHeroes> Late 2022, after an extensive pitch, SuperHeroes Amsterdam was added to the creative roster for Mondelez Europe. This is the first creative output for the Stimorol brand, and in a true SuperHeroes fashion, we set out to disrupt the feed through a fresh approach and create a deeper connection between Stimorol and its discerning gen-z audience.
LBB> The gen-z market was the target for the campaign. Why was Stimorol keen to engage with this demographic?
SuperHeroes> In the last decade, chewing gum sales have been dropping. Covid has made the decline worse. The remaining gum buyers are relatively old, and loyal to their brand. For Stimorol to grow, we had to target light and non-users. This audience is overrepresented within the gen z cohort. An audience that is not convinced by gum’s refreshing effects alone, and rather buys mints. Expectations were that connecting with gen z would also have a halo effect on other audiences.
LBB> Talk to us about the strategy and research that went into the spots. What informed the content?
SuperHeroes> The insight we based our campaign on came from The Robins, our gen-z collective of young adults, who help brands get fresh peeks into their generation and culture. They told us that their overstimulated brains tend to easily get bored or overwhelmed when they need to focus. Their mind then starts wandering, and they zone out. It can happen at any time; when they drive, work, have a conversation, sit in class, study, have lunch – and often not at the best time. Based on this, we positioned Stimorol Infinity / Max as the chewing gum to help you ‘Zone In’ with a humorous rebellious activation that played with the juxtaposition of being in versus out of the zone – simultaneously highlighting the product benefit of refreshing flavour that lasts longer than any of its competitors.
LBB> Each video is portrait, indicating it’s been made for social accounts. Which platforms were the focus of your campaign?
SuperHeroes> Social media was the core focus, with TikTok being the primary channel, and Instagram, secondary.
The reason for this was twofold. Our core audience, gen z, had the largest reach on TikTok and secondly, we opted to work with creators over influencers due to the nature of the concept. The majority of our creators had the largest followings on TikTok as well.
LBB> How did you ensure the messaging was clear in this portrait format and were there any special considerations you were mindful of?
SuperHeroes> In terms of messaging we worked very closely with each creator to ensure they understood the concept and what their role was, so that even without sound, it was clear – Stimorol helps you stay in the zone, with its long lasting chew.
Working in portrait is significantly different to other formats, we constantly had to bear this in mind, especially since the AI videos we were generating were only in 16:9 landscape format.
LBB> How did you choose the creators you partnered with and what was the process of working with them?
SuperHeroes> Creators were chosen according to their location (Benelux region) and audience relevance but we also wanted creators that aligned to Stimorol’s brand pillars, as well as content that performed well on TikTok: make-up, music and gaming.
We initially pitched the concepts to the creators in order to ensure an authentic connection to the brand.
What was super important was that we wanted them to create content that looked and felt like their authentic content – this was key in order to really ‘hack’ their content and create a surprise and delight moment from the brand. They were free to create or do whatever they wanted but the connection to zoning out needed to be clear. From here, we briefed them to detail their ‘Zone Out’ zones in order for us to authentically create our ads.
They shared their final videos with us and we created their zones, editing it all together and finally tying it together with sound and music effects.
LBB> With all the talk of AI, why were you keen to use it in this spot? What impact did it create?
SuperHeroes> The places that we zone out to are strange and distorted, similar to the current results of AI generated video content. We wanted to use this as part of our art direction in order to generate these absurd results – which gen z loves! It also offered a solution to increase relevancy by creating a tailormade zone out moment that includes specific traits of each influencer / creator.
Instead of ordinary product placement, Stimorol was integrated seamlessly into the content through the creators reaching for the chewing gum to help them stay on task with a natural product consumption moment.
LBB> Which AI tool did you use in this campaign and what were some of the benefits and drawbacks of using this platform?
SuperHeroes> We used Runway Gen 2 – text to video, which launched to the public in the week of presenting the idea to our client. We really needed to embrace this and turn it around quickly, in order to be one of the first to market using this AI tool.
The benefits were that it created results that we would never have been able to come up with ourselves. While the drawbacks are interesting as the drawbacks were only really in the initial phase of learning how to control the results and parameters. What was interesting was that multiple new features were added to the platform such as the ability to generate longer videos, preview before generating and create image to video – meaning we could even distort our own packaging in the brand channel end cards, truly linking the art directions.
LBB> What was the timescale of creating the campaign like?
SuperHeroes> We started working on the strategic framework and insights back in March, and really took the time to set up the groundwork and build a strong foundation for the rest of the campaign, before we moved on to the creative and then producing the first batch of content, going live in July, in a little over a month.
The campaign was phased across three months, with two influencers (one per market) going live per month, from July to September.
LBB> So far, what has the engagement been like and what are some reactions to the spots?
SuperHeroes> All the content is now live and still running, and so far we’ve had incredibly positive engagement including many enthusiastic comments about the content’s creativity and freshness:
“Your music is always such a vibe, and so is the content! Genius 🔥👏”
“I’m really used to weird shit here, but THIS is next level 😂😂”
“Love love it omg the lil kitty 🐈🥰🏻💙”
“🔥🔥yaaassss this is fire ❤️❤️❤️”
“It doesn’t get fresher than this ❄️”
The campaign manages to communicate the relevance of chewing gum – and Stimorol in particular – in a fun, engaging way that feels authentic to each creator, while at the same time conveying a clear product message.
The campaign is achieving remarkable results with over 17.1 Million views on TikTok and still counting!