Smiles ‘n Chuckles is back

Nestle Canada has resurrected Smiles ‘n Chuckles as the umbrella brand for the launch of 10 new confectionery products and the relaunch of three old favorites, Nibs, Mackintosh toffee and Jelly Tots.

The result is 67 new skus.

Nestle picked up the Smiles ‘n Chuckles trademark in the early 1980s with its purchase of Laura Secord.

The name was shelved in the mid-’80s, but was recently revived to denote Nestle’s sugar confectionery division.

According to Nestle research, consumers still remember the name well and think positively of it.

As part of the relaunch of Mackintosh toffee, one of Smiles ‘n Chuckles’ flagship brands, Nestle is updating its plaid packaging to give it a more contemporary look and adding three flavors: licorice, mint and pecan.

Among the new products is Roxs2 (rock squared), a roll of hard, fruit-flavored candy designed to take on Leaf Canada’s popular Jolly Rancher.

Innovative packaging from Russell Design, of Toronto, maximizes the impact of Roxs2 .

The vibrantly-colored sugar fixes comes in four fruit flavors, with each flavor available in three unique wrapper designs for a total of 12.

But it does not stop on the outside: individual candies are encased in 160 designs of wrappers.

Randy Johnston, director of Smiles ‘n Chuckles, says company research found that teens wanted to be talked to in an original, individual manner.

‘By offering each flavor in more than one wrapper design, we’re able to communicate one-on-one with an eclectic collection of icons that allows kids to create their own interplay with the product,’ Johnston says.

Nestle is using a variety of niche marketing strategies to target its core consumers, who range in age between nine and 24.

Newly designed modular racks will be used in-store.

The racks, containing the full Smiles ‘n Chuckles product line, act as a kind of store-within-a-store.

As well, they serve as an in-store promotions headquarters, where children collect and redeem loyalty points found on every Smiles ‘n Chuckles candy package for free prizes.

The opening promotion will award T-shirts custom-designed for Smiles ‘n Chuckles by Runt, a Toronto artist who has been commissioned to decorate the walls of several downtown buildings.

Print advertising will appear in Shift magazine and some other not-yet-released Shift publications.

Creative for the advertising and racking was done by Farine & Hellin Marketing, of Toronto, with placement handled by Nestle’s media agency-of-record, Optimedia.

Mid-July, Smiles `n Chuckles will also go online on the Internet at’nchuckles.

Cyber surfers will not only learn about Smiles ‘n Chuckles, generally, and Roxs2, in particular, but will be able to take part in an interactive treasure hunt game.

For back to school, Smiles ‘n Chuckles has teamed up with the Grand & Toy chain of stationery, office and school supply stores to encourage product sampling.

Smiles ‘n Chuckles will be featured on the front of all Grand & Toy back-to-school flyers with offers such as three full-sized confectionery products for every $10 back-to- school purchase.

The program was launched to the Smiles ‘n Chuckles internal sales team early this month with an hour-long interactive presentation from Ad-Venture Communications, of Toronto, which included a live host, 50 dancers and a video that replicated a dance club.

The new Smiles ‘n Chuckles products and racks are being shipped to stores now, with installation expected to be complete by the end of the month.