Lucky Charms taps augmented reality for new marketing effort
By Chantal Tode
March 18, 2013
General Mills cereal brand Lucky Charms is leveraging mobile to drive engagement and give customers a chance to win prizes via a new augmented reality application.
The Chase for the Charms app game enables users to become part of the action as three chasers track Lucky the Leprechaun so they can capture his charms. Each time players capture a charm, they have a chance to win prizes.
“We know that people of any age love Lucky Charms – whether they're 12 or 42,” said Greg Pearsons, Lucky Charms marketing manager at General Mills, Minneapolis, MN. “While we know they love eating the cereal, we think our grown-up fans will love having a new way to interact and have fun with us.
“With the advertising being all about chasing Lucky for his charms, we think it gives fans a way to actually be part of the chase themselves where they are on mobile and social channels,” he said.
“Every year we see how Lucky Charms is just part of how people celebrate St. Patrick's Day – so it's fun for us to bring something new to the 'party' in partnership with Ogmento, who created the app, and with Machinima, the top entertainment content focused network on YouTube.”
Lucky Charm’s Chase for the Charms effort is an example of how consumer packaged goods brands are embracing mobile to enhance their relationships with loyal customers via mobile engagement and take advantage of the fact that consumers have their smartphones with them all the time.
The Chase for the Charms app launched on St. Patrick’s Day.
The app is being promoted on YouTube and in Facebook with 30 and 60-second trailers to generate excitement about the launch.
When players catch a charm they have the chance to instantly win a prize such as a Lucky Charms personal cereal dispenser or the opportunity to have an animated version of themselves appear in a national TV commercial. Additionally, each charm captured earns players an entry into a sweepstakes for a chance to $10,000 worth of real gold.
The free app is available on the Apple App Store and Google Play.
The effort also includes the introduction of a special-edition version of the cereal in which all of the marshmallows are clovers.
CPG brands embrace mobile
Lucky Charms is the latest consumer packaged goods brand to embrace mobile.
In another example, Mondelez International’s Oreo brand recently rolled out a mobile messaging app exclusive to Nokia's Lumia Windows Phone that is designed to connect consumers through constellations (see story).
Also, Nestlé recently launched a global initiative leveraging QR codes on the packaging for its numerous brands to provide consumers with instant access to pertinent information about an item, including its nutritional profile (see story).
Additionally, a new mobile application from Kimberly-Clark’s Pull-Ups leverages mobile games featuring Disney characters and augmented reality to help moms and children stay motivated throughout the potty training process (see story).
“Chase for the Charms is the first app for Lucky Charms so we are very excited to see what our fans think,” Mr. Pearsons said.
Chantal Tode is associate editor on Mobile Marketer, New York
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