Brand: Juicy Fruit Gum (Wm. Wrigley Jr. Company)
Link: Click Here (It is the first ad entitled â€˜Gum-Chewing Killer Antâ€™)
Target: Gum-Chewing Pet Lovers
A man in a bathrobe picks up a frisbee and whistles, saying “Here, boy! Fetch,” as he throws the frisbee. A giant ant, acting very much like a black Labrador, catches the frisbee in its mandibles in mid-flight and brings it back to the owner. The man pulls out a stick of Juicy Fruit Gum and as the ant displays interest, holds it up, getting the ant to stand and jump for it. When he does not ultimately give the Juicy Fruit gum to the ant, the ant snaps at him and the owner scolds it saying, “BAD!” The ant cringes for a moment as a dog would, then rears up and knocks the owner across the yard, screaming. The man jumps in his car to escape the enraged giant ant which proceeds to pull the door off the car and drag him down an ant hole. The spot ends with the words, “Gotta Have Sweet?” and then another screen saying “Gotta Have” with the Juicy Fruit package below.
The animation in this spot is spectacular, giving the giant ant hungry for Juicy Fruit a very real and believable presence and personality. The surprise (the ant taking the place of the dog) gets the attention and is arguably ‘Tivo-proof’ for the adolescent and young male target audience who will be arrested even at fast forward speeds. The brand gets good visibility with the introduction of the gum in the first half of the spot. The product is the hero here (which is a good thing because the man doesn’t put up much of a fight) and does not get lost in the humor.
This advertising blog often cautions brands about the dangers of both humor and pets and this spot has both. Our primary concern is that the brand will get lost in a spot that is far more memorable for the supporting characters and story line. “What gum was that?” is the imaginable question after an office co-worker describes the spot and we are not certain that the answer will be ‘Juicy Fruit.’ This is also ultimately image advertising as the ‘Gotta have it’ proposition for the brand is generic to the category.
So the effectiveness of the spot ultimately rests with the distinctiveness and continuity of the campaign it sits on. If Juicy Fruit can sustain a years-long campaign with spots as well-executed and distinctive as this one – which look and feel much the same way, this spot works. If the brand is erratic or the executions do not reinforce each other, the money will have been wasted. Altoids is a great example of a brand able to take quirky, distinctive but potentially overwhelming spots and link them to a campaign which reinforced the brand. Wrigley must do the same with this Juicy Fruit spot.
Branding Bottom Line:
Juicy Fruit convinces us to stick to AKC breeds.