Next Generation Kids Video Games – Brought to you by your Friendly Cereal Brand
Back when I was a kid, I can remember me and my sister hassling mum to buy one particular cereal over another. It had nothing to do with the flavor, the packaging and certainly not the dietary benefits, the cause of our obsession was always the little plastic toy that some (smart) brands included free in the box. We’d race to finish one pack, so we could open the new box, tip-out the cereal and retrieve the little, bright plastic treasure hiding within.
In a world of reasonably similar breakfast cereal choices, that little plastic toy was a clear differentiator – a reason to choose one product over another. Jump forward three decades and cereal companies are re-discovering the lure of the kid-focused, value add – only now they’re harnessing the power of augmented reality.
Forget About The Little Plastic Toy
Nestle have taken the concept of on-pack promotion to a whole new level through their latest campaign designed to leverage their licensing deal for the kids film for Arthur and the Revenge of Maltazard. Designed to promote their Chocapic and Nesquik brands, Nestle have put the cereal box at the center of the experience. Until now, most augmented reality marketing campaigns were designed with a low level of interaction, which usually involved the user watching the magic happen in front of their eyes. With this campaign, Nestle and their augmented reality wizards, Dassault Systèmes genuinely integrate the player into the reality by turning the cereal box into a game and the movements of the player into the game controller. The players movements are detected in real time when tilting the cereal box as they collect balls of light to bring the character Bétamèche out of the virtual Minimoys world (inside the pack) into the the real world, out-side the box.
This Augmented Reality Campaign from Nestle is a remarkable piece of marketing on so many levels:
• The level to which the player interacts with the game couldn’t have a stronger pull for the children’s market.
• Video games have long been seen as an ideal way to leverage the magic of films (especially kids films). The challenge with licensing deals is Always how to leverage the most value for your investment. The standard printing of the film’s logo on the side of a soft drink cup provides a relatively low-involvement, where-as this campaign draws on that powers and transforms it into a powerful marketing tool in a win-win for both the film; Arthur and the Revenge of Maltazard and the Nestle products.
• The game is designed to make a powerful connection between the product packaging and the promotion. Long after the cereal has been eaten, the empty pack will still be treasured. How many cereal brands can boast their empty packs hanging around in the hands of their target market long after they’ve been eaten?
• With this campaign Nestle have taken ownership of a channel to market they can own and leverage when-ever budget allows. Whether it’s further games relating to this licensing deal, games relating to future licensing deals, or games they’ve had developed for themselves, the ability to link their products with these kid-magnet games provides a hugely valuable brand property.
• Integrating augmented reality design with a brands’ product packaging provides an incredibly rich canvas for story telling.
• It has re-imagined the role of augmented reality. As a relatively new technology, marketers and designers alike continue to explore new ways of bringing AR to life. This campaign brings a fresh take on how to use augmented reality technology, and with new, comes a level of kudos not lost on the kids market.
• What Nestle has here is an extremely rare and valuable genuine product differentiator – a compelling reason for kids to pressure their parents to buy this particular cereal over any other. In the words of my 10 year old, Mia; ‘I sooooooo want to get that!’
For clients and agencies with the budget and inclination to explore the world of augmented reality, there will be many opportunities to discover and create unique, relevant and remarkable brand experiences. The new frontier of augmented reality campaigns is well and truly open, the question is; can your brand grab a piece of it?