Mondelez is to clearly label videos of YouTube stars paid to promote Cadbury chocolates in its next campaign, having been pulled up by the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) for running misleading Oreo native ads last year.
The sweet maker is taking steps to avoid a second slap down from the ASA for not making it sufficiently clear to viewers that vlogger-created films are ads, in its forthcoming £7m campaign. The watchdog banned Oreo ads last year after it ruled they flouted, what had been until then, unclear rules on the authenticity of advertising on YouTube.
Cadbury will put the lessons learned from the censure to the test later this month. Popular YouTube creators are being recruited to produce additional content for a wider nationwide push featuring all of the Cadbury Dairy Milk variants for the first time since 2007.
Matthew Williams, marketing activation director at Mondelēz, told The Drum that it would be working with some “very interesting people” on YouTube who "we’ve shared the [campaign] idea with". Details of how signposts will appear in videos are yet to be confirmed but could include a statement over the clips or a note included in the description boxes, similar to the revised Oreo posts.
The chocolate maker also hopes to see a similar response to the ad as last year, which saw fans creating their own versions of the sport on YouTube.
Cadbury’s tiptoe back into the vlogger space following the Oreo ban spotlights the tensions that exist between internet celebrities and the way they present themselves to their subscribers. The ASA clarified the advertising rules following the violation and is educating brands and vloggers on how to pass the authenticity test.
Williams added: “Any vlogger activity that we undertake will comply with all necessary regulation and guidelines as you would expect from a responsible company.”
The branded videos from the vloggers will take the lead from Cadbury’s latest ad. Keith, the chair-swivelling dancer from last year’s ads, is returning but this time alongside six office colleagues. Each 'wannabe dancer represents one of the seven flavours of the Cadbury Dairy Milk range with the business keen to build demand for the most recent additions such as the Oreo and Dime variants.
Different length versions of the creative have been prepped to run across Facebook, Twitter, Google and Vine. It reflects the infulence videos have in the Mondelez media mix - a change indicative of the direction Williams believes the company’s global deals with Twitter and Google reflect.
“What we’re finding really works well for Cadbury is audio-visual content,” said Williams. “These days we’re much more 'what form of content have we got and how exciting is that going to be on different channels'."
The campaign aims to reinforce Cadbury’s ties to moments of joy after it broke away from the imaginary world of Joyville at the start of 2013. It employed a flurry of innovative projects to usher in the new strategy, including a James Corden tie-up for The Brits music awards. While Corden’s lip-synch rendition of Estelle’s “Free” was watched by more than three million UK viewers, the comedian will not return this time round, said Williams.
“We’re looking to replicate that success but we want to keep things fresh at the same time,” he added.
The campaign, which has been created by Fallon, PHD, Golin and Elvis, launches during Coronation Street on ITV next week (9 February). Cadbury has strong ties to the commercial broadcaster having sponsored its flagship soap opera for ten years and most recently they both developed a £3m Christmas campaign.