I’m munching on a pack of Walkers Mystery Flavour crisps and it’s got me thinking about how brands leverage the "Joy of Discovery". You know, the joy of finding something new, the joy of being in the know, the joy of sharing your discoveries with your friends. It’s certainly not a new concept, but not many brands use Discovery to effectively drive engagement, sales or generate growth.
I’m reminded of a Brand Innovation project I worked on a moon or two ago. The product was a beer with far fewer carbs than "regular beer". The problem was, the men buying it didn't feel compelled to buy it because of that. In fact, it put many beer swillers off. The catch was, once they did buy it, they remained loyal specifically because of its low carb benefit. Their wives were suddenly clearing room in the fridge for them to store their beer! We realised that the key to success was not in making this product stand out from the crowd. The key to success was in doing the opposite, letting consumers discover the low carb benefit on their own. Sure, we gave them a few hints, by placing a nutritional label on the bottle, for example. It worked. This product went on to become the fastest growing regular packaged beer brand in its market.
Walkers Mystery Flavour crisps tackle the Joy of Discovery from a different angle, focusing on product attribute rather than benefit. It’s a clever campaign, not because of of the lure of substantial prize money if you guess a flavour correctly, or because of the way they’ve used social media to fuel the debate, but actually because of the way they’ve approached distribution in supermarkets. The mystery crisps are thrown into multi-packs with Walkers ‘classic’ crisps. A brilliant way to use ‘new news’ to drive trial of ‘old’ products.
Does your product have any attributes or benefits that would be better left to the Joy of Discovery?
As for Mystery Flavour B. My taste-buds have no idea. Clearly I’m no crisp connoisseur!