SunChips shines with Juniper Park

Thanks to a new 10-acre solar power collection field in Modesto, Calif., many SunChips in the States are now made in a solar-powered factory. The brand is leveraging its green attribute with a playful mass campaign featuring 'solar-powered' executions by new(ish) Toronto agency Juniper Park.

Thanks to a new 10-acre solar power collection field in Modesto, Calif., many SunChips in the States are now made in a solar-powered factory. The brand is leveraging its green attribute with a playful mass campaign featuring ‘solar-powered’ executions by new(ish) Toronto agency Juniper Park.

For example, a billboard in Oakland features a stencil-like overhang so ‘SunChips’ appears as a shadow on the actual billboard. A newspaper ad invites readers to hold it up to the sun to reveal the message: ‘This is a solar-powered ad to tell you about our solar-powered chip.’ The text is printed backwards on the following page, making it legible only when held up to a light source. A magazine ad features a photo of solar collectors, with the copy: ‘We’re living up to our name. SunChips snacks are now made with the help of solar energy in California.’

‘We ensured that we only talk about things we’ve already done,’ explains Gannon Jones, VP marketing at Dallas-based Frito-Lay. ‘[Eco-friendly steps] can’t be treated as a promotional tactic.’

Jones says the parent company, Purchase, NY-based PepsiCo, is focused on increasing its green initiatives, and when the opportunity to tap into solar power came up, it was a perfect fit for SunChips because of its name and health-conscious target. ‘There’s an intersection between customers concerned with health and people concerned about the environment,’ says Jones. ‘We’re positioned as a [green] lead. SunChips is the Prius of Frito-Lay.’

Jones worked with Juniper Park to redesign the SunChips packaging last fall, to highlight its health and eco-friendly attributes. The agency was also involved in the redesign of Frito-Lay’s corporate consumer-facing website, fritolay.com.

Juniper Park, a division of BBDO Worldwide, quietly opened in April, 2007, and is led by president Jill Nykoliation and CDs Terry Drummond, Alan Madill and Barry Quinn. It’s set up to be involved in all of a company’s marketing initiatives, and to ideally work on new products and brands from the ideas stage. The agency is made up of a cross-disciplinary team that includes a YouTube guru, a PR expert, a design team and experienced ad people. Juniper Park’s client list is eclectic: as well as the U.S. Frito-Lay business, it includes Lithuanian telco Bite, Toronto lingerie shop Secrets from Your Sister and Red Cross Canada.