New campaign wants to make Werther’s Original more ‘relevant’ by highlighting diversity, inclusion

By Elizabeth Crawford

- Last updated on GMT

Source: Werther's
Source: Werther's
A new “more diverse and inclusive” marketing campaign for Werther’s Original that launched this week seeks to make the brand more “relevant” to modern consumers by showing that it offers more than the iconic hard candy for which it is best known, but which also may be associated with older generations.

“Probably most people know us best for Werther’s Original hard candy, and we want to make sure it is very clear we have so many different varieties – whether it is hard candy or soft caramels or even a whole line of sugar-free products as well as our caramel popcorn,”​ senior marketing manager Katelin Lindley told FoodNavigator-USA.

She explained that the new campaign – “A little piece of bliss” – shows young parents of diverse backgrounds enjoying with their children the company’s wide-ranging portfolio of confections and snacks.

For example, in the campaign's 15- and 30-second spots, which will run during Good Morning America, CBS this Morning and other shows as well as across several cable networks, including the Hallmark Channel and OWN, feature a golden-haired boy biting into and stretching out a soft chew caramel, a young Asian mother twirling her daughter who is holding a gold-wrapped candy, and an African American father playing with his son alongside an image of caramel being poured over popcorn.

As the images move across the screen, a “new memorable custom song that we are really excited about”​ plays in the background and helps to reinforce a central theme of the campaign that everyone has their own take on bliss, Lindley said.

The song, she added, “really helps to bring out those nice moments – the ones that make you feel like a child again.”

This is in stark contrast to the brand’s memorable campaign in the 1980s that featured a white-haired and -mustachioed man in cardigan recalling the first time his grandfather gave him Werther’s Original hard candy before passing the sweets to his grandson.

“Werther’s is this iconic brand and the idea that it has been passed down from generations is such a strong part of our equity,”​ but “Werther’s as a brand has really expanded from the time when were in a grandparents commercial and it was mainly focused on hard candy,”​ Lindley said. “We are so much more than that.”

Indeed, the product innovations showcased in the television spots have helped the brand grow “significantly year-over-year for a long period of time,”​ Lindley said, adding, “we want to capitalize on that momentum and keep it going.”

Beyond television

In addition to appealing to a more diverse audience and wider range of eating occasions, the campaign itself is diverse – spanning across traditional and new media.

Beyond the television spots, the campaign will include paid and organic social media, digital media ads – including some rich media banner units, and a microsite ​where consumers can watch a video, play a game and have a chance to enter and win some ‘bliss’ themed prizes, Lindley said.

“We also will have some coupons and integrations with some our different TV programs that we are airing as well,”​ she said.

The campaign launch is timed to sync with the start of fall, when people begin to seek out the warm rich brown flavors of caramel, which is closely associated with holidays such as Halloween with its caramel apples, Thanksgiving with caramel laced pies and Christmas with stockings full of sweets.

“Werther’s does extremely well in the fall time period and caramel as a flavor is really critical to the season, so with our fall TV campaign we felt like this was the right time to unveil”​ a new message, Lindley added.

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