How a social media debate led to Heinz Mayochup's launch in the US

Heinz was about to launch a new mayo product, but changed focus when it saw what people were talking about on social.

How a social media debate led to Heinz Mayochup's launch in the US

Company: Kraft Heinz Company
Campaign: Heinz Mayochup
Agency mix: Olson Engage (PR), VML (social), Starcom (media)
Duration: April 2018

Social media chatter about Mayochup, a combination of ketchup and mayonnaise, inspired Heinz to ultimately launch the product in the U.S.

In early April 2018, Heinz was set to launch a campaign for new Heinz Mayonnaise, leading up to the summer grill and picnic season.

Days before the planned launch date, the brand and its PR agency partner, Olson Engage, noticed an internet conversation budding around a Heinz product available in the Persian Gulf states called Mayochup. There was a heated discussion about the name of the product and its origin, and a separate debate about whether or not the condiment was necessary.

"We immediately changed course once we saw the news of Mayochup gaining momentum with U.K. media and on social media," explained Nicole Kulwicki, director of marketing for Heinz. "Our goal was to jump in on the trending story as quickly as possible to take part in a relevant conversation for the brand and debut Heinz mayonnaise."

Heinz hit the ground running on April 11, 2018.

"Within a few hours of discussing our media strategy as a team, we were able to develop assets and media materials, publish the Twitter poll, and push our news out to media," said Kulwicki. "All media materials drove traffic to the Heinz Twitter page and social post content was supported with paid media dollars to reach a national audience."

The team focused on outreach to top-tier lifestyle, food, and entertainment media, as well as major broadcast, online, and social-focused outlets.

"Once the Mayochup news had reached peak relevance, we refocused our efforts toward late night talk shows to maintain momentum," added Kulwicki.

On April 16, Heinz created another call-to-action when it asked fans on Twitter to come up an official name for the product and issued a press release to officially announce Mayochup's imminent U.S. launch.

On April 27, Heinz tweeted a short video with a microsite link for the product, featuring 92 different names which will appear on U.S. retailers’ shelves later this year.

Within 48 hours of the April 11 Twitter post, Heinz received nearly 1 million votes. There were over 500,000 votes for "Pass the Heinz Mayochup" and about 450,000 votes for "Nah, I'll make my own."

The Mayochup campaign garnered 832 media placements, including broadcast coverage on NBC's Today show, The Ellen DeGeneres Show, and in the opening monologue of ABC's Jimmy Kimmel Live! Other features on the product appeared in notable outlets such as USA Today, Washington Post, Esquire, Time, Fortune, and NPR.

The short video clip from the brand's April 16 Twitter post received more than 500,000 views, with thousands of people submitting their own Mayochup name suggestions. The official announcement clip on April 27 garnered more than 934,000 views.

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