Evian’s spider-baby blends past success with new media strategy

Olga Osminkina-Jones says she wants more from her famous babies What do you do when 135 million people watch one of your video ads online? You make a sequel, of course – but not without a twist. That’s the thinking behind Evian’s latest online ad “The Amazing Baby & Me 2.” It’s a sequel to […]

Olga Osminkina-Jones says she wants more from her famous babies

What do you do when 135 million people watch one of your video ads online? You make a sequel, of course – but not without a twist.

That’s the thinking behind Evian’s latest online ad “The Amazing Baby & Me 2.” It’s a sequel to last year’s immensely popular “Baby & Me” video campaign, in which tiny, CGI baby dopplegangers of adults dance together on opposite sides of a storefront mirror.

It sounds weird when we put it like that, so…well, you should probably just watch it if you haven’t already. Evian’s sequel is more or less the same – except that it features the popular web-slinging comic hero Spider-Man, in anticipation of Sony Picture’s new film The Amazing Spider-Man 2. And the company is banking on a repeat success.

“‘Baby and Me’ was a blockbuster for us,” said Olga Osminkina-Jones, vice-president of marketing for Evian’s parent company Danone Waters of North America, in an interview with Marketing.

Olga Osminkina-Jones

“And the results are really what allow us to say that it was a blockbuster, because we became the number-one ad of the last year on YouTube in the number of views.”

The brand’s goal is, at the very least, to match last year’s viral number of views. At the time of this writing, Baby & Me boats over 83.6 million views on YouTube, and according to an Evian release, 135 million total views across all video platforms online.

For comparison, more than 13 million people have viewed “The Amazing Baby & Me 2” on YouTube since its April 1 debut, in anticipation of The Amazing Spider-Man 2‘s release in theatres worldwide on April 16, and in the U.S. and Canada on May 2.

But even if the target is met, Osminkina-Jones says there is still much to be done.

“I don’t believe we’ve done all of the job we needed to do yet, to truly build that reputation to ‘Live Young’ and consumer understanding that’s what Evian stands for,” said Osminkina-Jones, who joined Danone in January from Dutch brewing company Heineken International. “But that’s definitely the focus for us moving forward.”

Evian’s goal, as with its previous campaigns, is to promote the brand’s lifestyle message of “living young” using creative interpretations of babies as symbols of purity and youth. However, while previous campaigns have, in her words, been “quite broad,” “The Amazing Baby & Me 2” took a more targeted approach.

The decision to partner with Sony Pictures on a Spider-Man campaign, for example, was a conscious decision to “youngify” the brand by associating Evian with a contemporary pop culture figure, Osminkina-Jones said. She described Spider-Man as “one of the long lasting icons within pop culture in terms of popularity and visibility.”

It is a level of brand awareness, especially among a younger audience, that Osminkina-Jones wants to attain.

Evian has typically released a new chapter in its baby-centric ad campaign every two years. Previous campaigns, all of which have been created by agency of record BETC Paris, include the Guinness World Record-breaking “Roller Babies” in 2009, and the “Baby Inside” campaign from 2011. But “The Amazing Baby & Me 2” is obviously an exception, and part of the reason why it was designed as a spin-off of last year’s ad, and not a fully-fledged new campaign.

It’s a new strategy for the brand – one driven by the need to stay top-of-mind amongst consumer inundated with marketing messages at an increasing rate – and Osminkina-Jones says her team is going to be “much more aggressive” in delivering new content to Evian’s audience as a result.

“Two years in our media landscape is starting to be too long of a gap.”

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