How milk shed its ‘boring’ label to reach a youth audience that rejects advertising

Milk consumption declines heavily with teens aged 13-17 as they assert their independence and choose drinks that are perceived to be cool and trendy. Other established brands with big budgets, like Coke and Red Bull, find easy ways into teens’ lives by helping fuel their on-the-go, hectic lifestyles. To compete, milk also needed a way to reach them that was engaging and a little irreverent – as milk’s personality could be considered a bit boring.

Snack Time
Milk West
Content Production
Digital Strategy
Social Media Management

We had two key challenges: Convince our teen audience to drink an extra half-glass of milk per month, to positively impact milk’s declining consumption rate; and at the same time improve milk’s perception and popularity, to boost its oft-considered dull personality.

We knew that traditional media would not be effective in reaching this cable-cutting audience. Knowing that teens spend more time online than any other demographic, the strategy was to reach them there.

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The Results

increase in positive brand perception
reported the intention to drink more milk
more glasses of milk consumed per week

A custom content series

We created a branded content series called Snack Time, that aired on YouTube and Tumblr. The series, which is made up of episodic short films, still, comic strips and animated gifs, features a milk carton named Carlton and a supporting cast of characters who all happen to be snacks that taste great with milk.

The series remained unbranded by design to engage with teens on their terms. Media placement complemented rather than interrupted their viewing experience. Promoted YouTube video, YouTube Reserve skippable pre-roll, user initiated placements and text links helped to drive awareness and traffic to the series. Since many teens also hang out at the cinema, we also ran special episodes in theatres during the three biggest teen films of the year: Avengers, Jurassic World and Star Wars.

We introduced a new Snack Time episode every two weeks. The series is easily digestible, and entertaining, and perfectly formulated for teen sensibilities and content for them to consume while they’re hanging out, when they’re thinking about having a snack.

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