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Chobani's Kids Branded Merch Giveaway Was a Smash Hit

March 19, 2019 | Sean Norris

Guys, we have an urgent breaking news announcement: Yogurt is … cool now? That’s if Chobani’s latest promotion is any indication, at least. In support of Chobani Gimmies, its new product line for kids, the yogurt brand launched a multi-channel marketing campaign that centered on a branded merch giveaway. So far, it went great.

Here’s how it worked. At noon Eastern every day from March 4 through March 17, Chobani held a “swag drop.” Kids could register on the Gimmies website for a chance to win the item of the day—skimboards, sleeping bags, ear buds, hoodies and various other branded merchandise. The colorful designs incorporate anthropomorphic cookies, ice cream sandwiches and other characters from the Gimmies product line, and they all look extremely rad:

Chobani promoted the drops heavily on Instagram (always a good idea if you want to get younger audiences involved), revealing each day’s giveaway to build buzz on social media and drive traffic to its website. And, people, let me tell you: Everything sold out. Fast. One Instagram commenter noted that 500 sets of earbuds were gone within five seconds.

Beyond the overwhelming response from its target audience, the campaign also generated considerable buzz online. Adweek picked up the story, praising its use of branded merchandise to “elevate” Chobani’s product. Forbes also ran a lengthy article covering the launch.

And here’s how Marketing Dive described Chobani’s thought process:

The brand says the campaign was inspired by “kid-centered workshops,” where youngsters discussed their desire to be unique among their friends, leading Chobani to focus on individuality when developing the Gimmies characters and designing the swag so that it’s not overly branded, according to Adweek. While creating unique, branded merchandise is a trend more brands are embracing, it also aligns with Chobani’s in-house creative strategy, which has allowed more streamlined campaign testing and refining of its brand vision during the production process.

By encouraging consumers to sign up for the brand’s email list, Chobani was able to better connect with its biggest fans and provide more personalized experiences.

This campaign is more proof that branded merchandise, when designed and implemented in creative ways, can generate massive ROI that goes beyond the target audience.

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