Posted At: November 16, 2013 1:35 p.m.
by Karly Weigel
A few weeks ago, public relations students from across the United States and multiple other countries gathered in Philadelphia for the Public Relations Student Society of America (PRSSA) National Conference. For takeaways from the conference as a whole, check out Christi Rich’s blog.
One session covered the August 2012 launching of iögo (pronounced “yogo”), a Canadian yogurt line created by Ultima Foods. The product creation and campaign earned the project a Silver Anvil Award, the highest award of professional achievement offered through the Public Relations Society of America (PRSA).
The team behind iögo yogurt was able to break away from a well-known product, Yoplait yogurt. At the time, Yoplait was headed toward being pushed out of the yogurt market in Canada by other competitors. It stood to lose 95 percent of its business in 20 months. These numbers forced Yoplait to make a move. Instead of remaining stagnant, iögo was created under the Ultima Foods umbrella.
The president of CASACOM, Marie-Josee Gagnon, APR, and the director of public relations and customer service at Ultima Foods, Diane Jubinville, successfully worked to launch iögo into the Canadian yogurt market.
The iögo branding and product launch were innovative and offered a fresh new look for yogurt in the Canadian market. Only three months into the launch, the iögo team met with more than 4,000 consumers to get feedback about the new product. The iögo team wanted to make sure they carefully listened to consumer feedback early on. Sampling parties allowed invited journalists to taste the yogurt, but the iögo name was kept in strict secrecy.
The iögo campaign took to the streets to intrigue consumers. Billboards with the signature iögo black dots were strategically placed across Canadian towns. These billboard teasers helped create buzz around the product. The iögo street dance team led multiple flash mob dances and handed out free iögo products. Today, 84,314 individuals like iögo on Facebook, and Canadians are crazy about the new yogurt.
The iögo brand prides itself on being a family-friendly yogurt brand. Children and grandparents alike can enjoy the simplicity and taste of the yogurt. The iögo yogurt does not have a single ingredient listed on the packaging that a consumer can’t recognize.
Along with keeping chemicals and unknown additives out of its yogurt, iögo uses milk from a select few Canadian dairy famers and is not afraid to be transparent about these farms. Six unique yogurt products and 40 flavors give consumers an array of yogurt choices. Some interesting flavors include passion fruit, honeydew and “caffelatte.”
Currently, iögo is in the evaluation stage and has seen exponential growth. Ultima Foods claims more than 90 percent of Canadians are aware of the iögo brand.
The willingness to launch a new product and take chances using unconventional advertising was at the heart of the iögo yogurt product. As PR professionals, we must be willing to step out and listen to our consumers and remain transparent. The iögo launch clearly demonstrates thoughtful planning and a drive to succeed.