'Talking Caribou' Promotes New 'Simple Ingredients' Coffee Coolers

Caribou Coffee is introducing a talking caribou as part of its summer campaign to drive awareness of the “simplified” ingredients in its popular Caribou Coolers.

The brand’s customers “won’t compromise on taste,” so Caribou conducted extensive consumer testing before changing the coolers’ ingredients, says Senior Director of Product Innovation Jenifer Hagness. 

Although not divulging which ingredients were replaced or removed, Hagness reports that the coolers now use a “simple base mix” that meets the Whole Foods “clean label” standards to which the Caribou brand has committed, while actually improving the beverages’ taste. Also, the custom flavor choices for the coolers, as with all beverages, now include the “real” vanilla syrup and “real” caramel sauce that Caribou moved to earlier this year -- as well as the “real” chocolate that Caribou has long used, she says.



The campaign’s creative, developed with agency Vitro (San Diego, Calif.), “reflects the playful, premium tone and voice of the Caribou Coffee brand,” CMO Michele Vig tells Marketing Daily. It also broadens exposure to the images of a real caribou that the brand introduced in its social channels earlier this year, she says.

In addition, the new creative takes the animal mascot concept to another level by introducing talking versions. 

Four radio ads (two 30’s and two 15’s) feature two caribou having humorously philosophical conversations that ultimately drive home the core message about the new coolers’ “real, simple” ingredients. Those ads will air in the Twin Cities through early July.

Caribou will also use talking caribou, and product cinemagraphs, in videos on its Facebook, Twitter and Instagram channels over the summer to “infiltrate fans’ feeds” and attract new followers, says Vig.

On May 5, Caribou Coffee locations promoted the improved coolers by offering free mini versions of three new flavors being offered this summer: salted caramel, mint chocolate and raspberry.  

Stores are also featuring point-of-purchase creative for the new coolers, including a sign that shows a hoof and the message: “A list of ingredients you could count on one hoof.”

Caribou Perks members received a preview and discount offer for the new coolers, and will receive more special deals and offers throughout the summer.

The brand will also be promoting cooler giveaways and events through August. 

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