Scharffen Berger Chocolate Maker has married out-of-home and social media to enable fans to star in ads on 50 digital billboards in bus shelters across San Francisco.
The campaign includes five creative executions produced by San Francisco agency Camp + King that celebrate the "wonderfully complicated" make-up of the premium chocolate and the personalities of the people who eat it, with headlines such as "I'm dark, spicy and mysterious" and "I'm sweet, salty and a little nutty."
But in addition, the posters include directions encouraging the city's residents to take selfies and share them publicly as Instagrams, with the hashtag #wonderfullycomplicated. Some of the selfies are chosen to be turned into new ads, with their own descriptive headlines, that are also appearing on the digital shelter billboards, and on Scharffen Berger's Facebook page. (A short video describing how it works is viewable on Vimeo.)
Fans of the brand's artisanal chocolate are "taste explorers — people with palates that crave adventure as much as comfort — and 'Wonderfully Complicated' brings this to life," said Bernie Banas, VP at Berkeley, Calif.-based Scharffen Berger Chocolate Maker, which was acquired by The Hershey Company in 2005. "Tying the campaign to social media and featuring chocolate lovers in the ads allows us to make a direct connection with them, celebrating that we are both one of life's great pleasures that are proudly, boldly and always wonderfully complicated."
Scharffen Berger reports that it chose Instagram both because it's the fastest-growing social media site worldwide and because it aligns with the brand's target: educated, well-traveled women with active social and cultural lives and "foodie" interests. Food is, of course, among the most searched-for and published topics on Instagram, and 68% of the site's users are women, according to App Data.