Objective: Create a new wave of interest, followers, and fans in an audience which is older than the existing target audience of the Skittles website and social media campaign (currently targeting youth, teens, and young adults). Accomplish this by creating a campaign which will appeal to an audience of 30- and 40-year olds.
Strategy: Create a Facebook campaign which has more meaning and depth than the current website approach in order to appeal to an older and more mature audience, and which will still be interesting and fun for the younger audience. Run a promotional give-away of free bags of Skittles within a specific time frame for submission of photos promoting this campaign message.
About the company
Skittles currently utilizes social media with a zany and off-the-wall approach to appeal to fans. The company has established a bright, fun, and quirky personality for itself, and is targeted to a younger audience: youth, teens, and young adults. Bright, bold colors; funny-but-odd humor; and frequent use of animation and cartoon-looking images keep their campaign on the light side of meaningful. Recently, the company has branched out with a new commercial spotlighting Steven Tyler, lead singer of Aerosmith, a popular rock band from the 70s, 80s, and 90s. This move was a good one in order to appeal to an older generation than their current fan-base. Additionally, the darker-colored environment of the commercial leading up to a bright reveal and contrast of Skittles has added some depth and dimension to an otherwise youth-targeted audience.
Process and Reasoning: I wanted to start a campaign which would appeal to a more mature audience while keeping some of the youthful quirkiness, humor, and zany personality established by Skittles. Keeping in line with past campaigns by Skittles of “Experience the Rainbow” and “Taste the Rainbow”, I decided on a campaign titled “Find the Rainbow.” The campaign challenges fans to find the rainbow in their lives—essentially to find the good in life, no matter their circumstances. The call to action requires fans to post a photo showing the rainbow in their lives, and for a limited time they will receive a free bag of Skittles for their posted photo. This engages fans, promotes the Skittles candy product, and allows fans to be showcased by Skittles.
Knowing that many members of this new target audience use Facebook on a regular basis, I chose to use Facebook as the platform for this campaign. My fan page includes a newly designed cover (timeline) photo, profile picture, and 4 coordinating posts to launch the campaign.
To create the visuals, I used Microsoft PowerPoint. The timeline picture is a photograph of an intentionally “sad” situation, modified to be black and white, with the only color (with minimal saturation) showing within the created magnifying glass to indicate finding the rainbow in the situation. A bag of skittles and skittles candy were added to the ground in the photo, and shown in full color. Text was added for the campaign slogan and company name with coordinating “rainbows” behind them.
The profile picture is a yellow Skittles candy emerging from behind a cloud. The image was created by making a copy of the photo and layering the cloud (after removing its background) over the designed Skittle candy piece. I added a lighter glow to the candy piece to make it appear to radiate like the sun.
The first post is the campaign introduction. It features a bag of Skittles candy with layered rectangles in a fan design behind it and text overlaying this background rainbow of color, with the word “Rainbow” similar to the Skittles candy font and colors.
The second post is a photo with the bag of Skittles added (another copy, remove background, layer process). This photo was chosen as a ‘fan-submission’ because the subject of the photo is showing off his Ironman cast. Everything about this photo supported this campaign—he broke his arm and found a way to bring fun, humor, and awesomeness into the situation. Text in a font that mimics the Skittles candy font is used as an overlay.
The third post (another ‘fan-submission’) was an intentionally chosen ‘selfie’, since I expected that many submissions for this campaign would be phone-camera selfies. It is grainy despite its high-quality size (also an expected scenario of submission posts), but it supports this campaign well. Text was added in the same font mimicking the Skittles candy.
The fourth post is an additional post launching the campaign. A gloomy photo was overlaid with text, 3 Skittles candy design elements (triadic color scheme), and the campaign hashtag which challenges fans to find the rainbow. This was posted with a caption explaining that every day is better with a rainbow.
Critique: I posted my pictures and a picture of the full Facebook fan page to our class Facebook group, asking for critiques. Sidney Meneses Sepulveda suggested that I add the full name of ‘Skittles’ to the profile photo, rather than just using an ‘s’. I opted to leave this as is since the intention is to have the sun appear as a Skittles candy which only has an ‘s’ on it. Chris Swords Betts suggested that I make the letters of ‘Rainbow’ in the campaign title all different colors. Prior to this suggestion, it was white with a red outline, like the Skittles candy font on its packaging. I loved this idea, and incorporated it. It adds an extra punch of color to the campaign and focus on the bright and fun aspects of finding the rainbow. Shay Sookhoo also mentioned that the word “the” in the first post looks odd because it is at an angle. This was intentionally done in order to keep some of the quirky personality which Skittles has become known for and to create a line for the eyes to associate Skittles with being the solution to the challenge. I was pleased that Shay recognized the word pointed toward the candy, which was purposeful, so I kept this feature, knowing it accomplished its purpose two-folds—if it seems odd, it’s right in line with many of the odd comments on the Skittles homepage!
Font names: Franklin Gothic Heavy, Franklin Gothic Medium
Image sources: Girl fallen off trike, Sun behind cloud, Skittles bag1, Skittles candies, Skittles bag2, Skittles bag3, Ironman cast, Coffee mug of Skittles, Gloomy day