Licensed to chill: Bulla-Warner Bros mash up takes ice cream over the rainbow
Campaign: No Place Like Home
Client: Bulla Dairy Foods
Agency: The Bridge
When The Bridge was developing a campaign for Bulla Creamy Classics ice-cream late last year, the desired associations for the brand related to comfort, relaxation and coming home – some of the best feelings in the world.
Over the decades, however, budgets have dwindled, media has fragmented and marketers typically don’t have the same kind of financial resources to reposition existing brands or establish powerful brands. The creative has to work much harder.
It can take a very long time to establish such associations from scratch but there’s a character that’s already famous for representing and enjoying the feeling of coming home, one that incidentally is a ‘classic’ – Dorothy from The Wizard of Oz.
In a category where 50 to 80% of ice-cream sales are on promotion, Bulla needed to create an emotional connection with its consumers that would strengthen brand equity and increase baseline sales.
The strategy was to position Bulla Creamy Classics as a taste of home – the best ice-cream to relax and unwind with – by featuring a well-loved screen icon, famous for her poignant quest to return to the security and comfort of home. In the ad, we see Dorothy, the quintessential ‘little girl lost’ who comes home to a classic ice-cream – a treat to remind you that there is no place like home. Her journey mirrors that of most Australians, who long for the sanctuary of home and a little reward like ice-cream, that’s a delicious ‘full stop’ to the end of a busy day.
The use of the much-loved The Wizard of Oz characters gave the creative concept an immediate sense of warmth, familiarity and charm, which would have been more difficult to achieve through newly-created protagonists. By referring to The Wizard of Oz, Bulla was able to revisit the memories the film evokes, the sentiment around being ‘at home’ and the love of ice-cream, to give it a reinvigorated place in the homes of many Australians.
Bulla Dairy Foods has also been owned and operated by the same three families over six generations, which was another reason why we felt that The Wizard of Oz themes would be a natural fit for this campaign. Not only is it emotive, based on the familiarity and the positivity of ‘coming home,’ but it also resonates positively with families, well beyond supermarket freezers.
Warner Bros had already done all the heavy lifting by establishing the associations desired by the Creamy Classics brand – and Bulla was effectively hitching a ride. It wasn’t a free ride of course, but it was much faster than walking and, in the long run, much cheaper when one considers the typical costs involved in forging and maintaining brand associations.
Thirty-second and 15-second TVCs in metro Melbourne and Sydney, and regional Victoria and New South Wales, aired during the peak summer season. Budget constraints restricted us to one medium.
The Bridge worked with Warner Bros Consumer Products and the client to develop a campaign involving Dorothy and a soundtrack based on ‘There’s No Place Like Home’.
This was a low weight, short-lived campaign involving two four-week bursts.
The campaign resulted in sales increases in Victoria and New South Wales compared to a decline in unadvertised states. Its first week saw increased sales of 20,000 units, the biggest increase ever achieved in a one-week period in non-discounted sales. The TVC received high scores for recall, recognition and memorability in brand tracking. Recall was higher than any previously tracked Bulla ad, and 14% higher than Streets Blue Ribbon, which had double the spend. Recalled ad descriptions were incredibly vivid.
Finally, brand equity increased. Pre-campaign, 6% of purchasers would recommend the brand. Post-campaign this increased to 20%.