I was lead Senior Strategist for Nature Valley while at Mccann NY. The brand's purpose is to encourage people to “enjoy nature”. They had been showing its real commitment to nature through a long-held partnership with the US National Parks association. However, this effort was not truly leveraged in their communications, and their media campaigns were usually just product focused. People didn't know about this partnerships and the brand seemed to be just talking rather than doing. So how could we inspire people to enjoy nature and have them realize we share their commitment to nature?
SOLUTION: Nature Valley Trail View. A visual digital platform that allows people to explore the most amazing national parks in the country with just a click. (Industry Awards: Gold 4 A’s Jay Chiat Award for strategic excellence, 2 Gold Cannes Lion, 1 Webby, 1 Clio) .
MY ROLE: Consumer research, insight gathering, brief development, creative inspiration, results measurement, 2.0 Strategy.
We also changed Nature Valley's TV communications, which had been historically very CPG-style, and we made them less contrived, more realistic and emotional so that people could enjoy nature even from their couch. When I started working on this account, there was very little brand consistency and we made sure to work collaboratively and build a consistent brand across touch points.
OUR PROCESS: I conducted research (primary and secondary) to understand how people relate to nature, what it means for them and how it feels. I then facilitated several workshops with key stakeholders to look at all touch points and select the common themes, identify opportunities for brand equity consistency and develop together with the creative team some brand principles. We wanted to keep it flexible and leave room for creativity, but we also made sure to build a brand that was recognizable and authentic.
This was another General Mills brand I worked on. We collaborated with the client and all the stackeholders in the development of the brand purpose: "making the ordinary extraordinary" and created a TV and social media content strategy that will show people how Chex makes any situation less boring.
These videos run on TV and online media.
MY ROLE: Lead strategist, research, brand architecture, brief development, creative inspiration and results measurement.
While at The Vidal Partnership I was lead strategist during 4 years for Sprint Wireless, one of the largest Wireless Network providers in the US whose biggest competitors are AT&T and Verizon. This is a sample of some of the campaigns we developed.
"Silencio" won 2007 Advertising Age Hispanic Creative Awards
MY ROLE: Account Planner, I designed and conducted research across US Hispanic Markets, and did brief development, creative inspiration, results measurement etc.
These are a few examples of digital projects I developed for Sprint as lead strategist. Most of them are part of integrated campaigns inspired from an overall strategy conceived as media neutral. I developed the strategy, collaborated with creatives on concept development and presented to client.
MY ROLE: Consumer research, insight gathering, creative inspiration, brief development, presentation, results measurement.
FEMA Preparedness Campaign: "Today"- a universal insight that turned a Hispanic project into a national campaign
Pro-bono campaign for the US Federal Emergency Preparedness Agency. Our clients, the Ad Council and FEMA asked us to develop a Campaign to increase preparedness among US Hispanics in case of Natural Disaster. Research showed that Hispanic were less prepared than non-Hispanics and we needed to understand why.
In collaboration with an external vendor, I designed and conducted National ethnographic research across US markets to understand cultural and behavioral barriers that prevented Hispanics to be prepared for natural disasters. We conducted friendship ethnographies across NY, Miami, Denver and L.A.
Our Strategy was inspired by Hispanics' flexible sense of time, however, since "procrastination" is a universal insight when it comes to planning for the unexpected (all unprepared individuals are procrastinators - even if it's more pronounced among Hispanics) it was decided to be launched across markets and "Today" 360 campaign ran in Spanish and English, becoming FEMA’s national preparedness campaign.
KRAFT MAC & CHEESE. Crispin, Porter and Bogusky launched the "You know you love it" campaign to target families instead of just kids (as the brand historically did). It's an iconic brand that has been part of all American homes since world war II, so it made sense to appeal to that "secret love" adults still had for it.
But Kraft needed to win with the Hispanic market as well in order to meet their business objectives. The sweet spot was un-acculturated Hispanic moms who (surprise!) did not have that special, emotional relationship with the brand, so their GM strategy did not work for them. We needed to develop a uniquely Hispanic strategy in order to win with Hispanic moms. So we conducted an extensive ethnography across US markets to understand the eating habits of Hispanic families and their perceptions of Mac & Cheese. We talked to and visited more than 20 Hispanic homes, went shopping with moms, cooked and ate with them, and chatted about why they do or don't buy American products and Mac and Cheese. We learned that they had barriers because they were unfamiliar with it, and the powdered cheeses was odd. But the kids loved it and asked for it. So we developed a Strategy leveraging the influence of their bi-cultural kids. Maybe the moms are un-acculturated, but their kids are growing with other american friends and are huge influencers at home. So our strategy tapped into the desire of moms to connect with their kids at a deeper level, with their american side.
HAMBURGER HELPER. Last year, the HH business was bleeding and as the most profitable General Mills brand, it was a big problem for the company. An iconic, American household brand, Hamburger Helper had lost cultural relevance and was trying to mirror what Mac and Cheese (his biggest competitor) had done. I worked collaboratively with the client and all the stakeholders involved in re-launching this brand. We facilitated workshops to revise their Brand Archetype, conducted National research to understand consumer behaviors and attitudes toward dinner, food, family and Hamburger Helper, as well as online listenings to get into the conversation. We identified new opportunities for the brand, which had historically only targeted moms and developed a Strategy that prioritized Men, African American families and overall a more modern family approach.
SPRINT RETAIL. Sprint needed to connect with US Hispanics at the retail level and we noticed that their attitudes and behaviors toward shopping were different than the General Market. So we suggested to go to the field and study why and how they differ.
This is one of the largest research projects I have worked on. I designed, supervised and conducted a one-month research study across US Hispanic Markets, including Miami, Dallas, Chicago, NY, and L.A. to gather insights about Sprint's Hispanic Shoppers and develop a strategic recommendation for their Retail Plan for 2011. I conducted one-on-one interviews, visited and audited Sprint stores. With the learnings from the research, we developed a Strategy, facilitated working sessions, and presented the recommendation to the client. Hispanics see the shopping experience as a leisure activity, and an opportunity to spent some time with their families. Our "Technology Playground" recommendation had great positive buzz within the organization and was a must-have driver for their 2011 national retail planning.