5 Marketing Campaigns Gen Z & Millennials Loved This Month

From a CBD-infused burger to a non-human influencer, here’s all the marketing that killed it in April…

As we’ve discussed before, it’s not easy to get Gen Z and Millennials’ attention. More than two in five 13-36-year-olds use an ad blocker, with pre-roll video, mobile in-app ads, and banner ads ranking highest as the types of ads they are trying to avoid. Ads on streaming platforms also rank highly as a nuisance, and 43% of young consumers are avoiding them by paying for an ad-free version of a service. That’s why we regularly highlight creative marketing campaigns that think outside the commercial box and provide something new and interesting for young consumers to be entertained by, not annoyed by. Here are five marketing campaigns, including two burgers, a digital shopping hack, a non-human influencer, that we—and Gen Z and Millennials—loved this month.

1. Impossible Whopper

Burger King kicked off the month with a whopper of a marketing move. On April 1st, the brand announced that the iconic Whopper is going vegan. The timing won them extra buzz as people speculated whether it was all an elaborate April Fool’s joke—but the plant-based burger is real, and a permanent addition to their menu. The fast food chain is teaming up with vegan pioneer Impossible Foods to create the Impossible Whopper, signaling the biggest breakthrough for fake meat into the restaurant industry to date. Their move follows in the footsteps of fellow fast food restaurants, White Castle and Carl’s Jr., along with more upscale chains like Momofuku and Umami Burger. Though they started with a small test, by the end of the month Burger King reported the Impossible Burger was enough of a success that they’ll be rolling it out nation-wide, with every location offering meatless burgers by the end of 2019. The new…


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The Newsfeed

Quote of the Day: “Retail should be a facilitator for experience, rather than just selling product.”—Sharmandean Reid, Founder, Wah Nails London (YPulse)

Millennials seeking portable booze are cracking open canned wine. Even though the category still only accounts for less than 1% of the Millennial-favorite alcoholic beverages’ market, Nielsen reports it spiked 69% last year and continues to gain ground. An exec at Delicato Family Wines explains, “Millennials have grown up in a world where consuming wine outdoors—or any location outside of the traditional table—is more acceptable than generations past.” (Wine Spectator)

Summer camps are cropping up to teach kids how to become YouTubers. At I-D Tech Camps, Level Up, and Star Camps, kids can learn all about how to, as the latter puts it, “Become an Internet sensation.” They offer courses in how to create and post videos, from shooting clips to editing audio, and how to build their personal brand. But don’t worry, most are framing YouTubing as a hobby, not a career, and setting kids’ expectations accordingly. (WSJ)

A new bill could change the free-to-play profit model that’s made games like Fortnite top earners. Senators have proposed the official ban of “loot boxes,” or items that players can buy (and sometimes must buy) to win a video game, often gambling on what’s inside. Senator Ed Markey explains that “Inherently manipulative game features that take advantage of kids and turn play time into pay time should be out of bounds.” For some, this will eliminate a key revenue stream and open the door to review other in-game purchases.  (The Verge)

A social media overhaul upped Corn Nuts’ sales by 12%—with no paid support.The snack’s sales were stagnant before a new exec took over their Twitter, infusing it with the personable tone food brands have become known for (and sometimes notorious for). Since then, followers spiked from 650 to 21,000, and what they’re calling a “scrappy” strategy “absolutely translated to sales,” reporting that retail sales spiked 12% and Millennials’ repeat purchases rose the same percentage. (Marketing Dive)

The retail apocalypse continues, with 7,000 more stores closing their doors in 2019. CoStar Group estimates that the square footage of retail space closed has topped its own record each year since 2017, and this year they’re “predicting more of the same.” PayLess ShoeSource, Gymboree, Dressbarn, and Charlotte Russe lead the list of number stores planned to shutter this year, as retailers learn to scale down size and up Experiencification for young shoppers. (Business Insider

Quote of the Day: “It’s a really interesting time at the moment in catalog [music]…Sometimes, it’s a question of how we make something out of nothing.”—Tim Fraser-Harding, President, Global Catalogue, Recorded Music at Warner Music Group (Rolling Stone)

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