Gratuitous Kiwiana wins the day as Tasti and Contagion take Colmar Brunton’s August Ad Impact Award

After a long period of flying under the radar, Auckland-based food company Tasti Products came out all Kiwiana guns blazing with a cliche-filled online and print campaign in September last year. A few months back it took the next logical step down that path, launching its first ever TVC with a very colloquial remix of OMC’s How Bizarre and some completely over the top, almost ironic patriotism. And while some in adland didn’t seem too keen on it, consumers seem to be, because the ad has taken out the August instalment of Colmar Brunton’s Ad Impact Award. 

As Contagion’s Dean Taylor says, in typically feisty fashion, “you know when an ad is working when advertising people are complaining about it”. 

He says Fair Go has already been on the phone to include it in this year’s Ad Awards as it has already received a number of nominations and Tasti’s director of sales Adrian Cook says the campaign has been received very well by retail partners and consumers alike. 

“We have also just topped 50,000 Facebook likes, which, given that we were just below 20,000 before we started on the campaign, is a great result,” he says. 

Colmar Brunton’s account director Harriet Dixon says replacing How Bizarre with ‘Tasti Bar’ in the lyrics means consumers will be singing along and “won’t fail to remember who and what this ad is for”. 

Talkability is really high, as is the likelihood to pass it along virally, creating a strong emotional and rational response for the Tasti brand, resulting in really high intentions to purchase,” she says. “It really has captivated the viewers’ attention in a genuinely positive way, using clever local humour to get attention and drive a strong response.” 

While New Zealandness has been a common theme in the advertising campaigns of recent years, Cook told us when the campaign launched that this focus—and the two year planning process to ensure the look and feel was on-brand before the campaign launch—had paid off, with a big increase in sales.

“The results have been nothing short of spectacular and is highlighted best in the $135 million wrapped snacks category where the Tasti brand is now brand leader with a 15.6 percent share of total market and growing at 26 percent,” he says.

Cook says Facebook has proven to be a very successful platform for the brand, so it decided to tap into that community and crowd-source the Kiwiana creative by asking its fans for suggestions. And with all the contributors being credited for their ideas, Contagion reckons it got the record for the country’s largest creative department, with a total of 30,000.

“It’s no surprise that an ad made with the help of Kiwis is loved by Kiwis too,” says Contagion’s acting creative director Verity Dookia. “We’re really happy that after more than 80 years of being a proud Kiwi company, Tasti is well on its way to an iconic Kiwi status.”

The animation was done by Watermark. 

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