Category: Consumer Packaged Goods
Agency: Deep Focus
Country: United States
As a leader in the industry -- with the honor of being the most trusted brand in its category -- Purina holds a rich portfolio of 24 pet-related products and a loyal customer base. But customer behaviors have been changing, and Purina faced a new market problem: it needed to seem as personal and responsive as the new crop of “mom and pop” competitors.
To help build on Purina’s leadership position as a consumer-friendly, pet-loving company – and do it at scale – the brand and its agency, Deep Focus, took on the challenge of showing Purina deserved the trust of pet lovers everywhere, in a campaign called, fittingly, Purina Trust.
To accomplish this, the brand activated a social listening program to reach these thousands of “neutral” pet owners -- people who did not feel strongly about Purina one way or another.
Research from Millward Brown on how people perceive Purina showed there were two ways Purina could build trust: by showing empathy, and by showing expertise. It was also clear the vast majority of people didn’t feel strongly one way or another about Purina; this was the perfect opportunity for Purina to reach people and turn them into brand advocates.
The brand reached out specifically to users in the U.S., but didn’t target a specific demographic. However, since there is a large group of young adults on Twitter, the brand was also interacting with them often.
Therefore, Purina used social listening tools such as Radian6, Twitter search and Sprinklr to find relevant conversations about pets, such as common pet behavioral issues, or celebratory moments like getting a new pet. By listening to conversations about cats and dogs, Purina could celebrate these special moments with custom creative using altered videos, images, links to information, and so forth, using a real-time content team of photographers, designers, and community managers to create the content. Many of the images were personalized with that pet’s name, or a custom illustration. The strategy created highly engaging content that pet lovers would want to re-share.
One example is Yoga Cat, a piece of content Purina created showcasing how pets motivate their owners in many ways, including when it comes to fitness and exercise. The funny tweet is a tribute to whiskered yogis everywhere and their incredible ability to hold the savasana pose. Not only is the piece lighthearted and fun, but it also provided a creative medium to talk about ways for cat owners to keep their pets fit and in-shape.
With an average identification-to-response time of two hours, the campaign joined in pertinent conversations with speed and relevancy. The entire workflow has been integrated into Purina’s overall marketing strategy.
The Purina Trust campaign started in mid-2013, reaching thousands of pet lovers each week on Twitter, as well as their followers. The vast majority of users engage positively with the content, retweeting and favoriting subtly-branded Purina content.
Agency Deep Focus worked closely with Purina to showcase how the company is full of real, animal-loving people in this “always on” social campaign . It featured Purina people with real stories and strong, loving connections with their pets.
The campaign was designed for mobile media as most people consume content on Twitter through their phones. Knowing that in-stream content is important for mobile, it used emerging platforms like Vine to create short, shareable custom content, with an emphasis on the in-stream experience.
The impact of the campaign is seen partly through well-received anecdotal evidence. Since it began, there has been an increase in positive reputation for Purina through reporting from Evolve 24.
There were more concrete metrics as well. As the campaign launched, it made a big splash in social media. Positive metrics included:
The Purina Trust campaign is innovative, since other pet care companies didn’t appear to be responding to conversations at this scale. Unlike many other companies, Purina wasn’t just responding when people mentioned the brand, but it was actively seeking out conversations.