Kraft Heinz finds true love in ketchup

New campaign focuses on the pairing of ketchup and French fries in a more emotionally driven message.
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With its new campaign, “True Love,” Kraft-Heinz is exploring the romantic backstory between the humble French fry and Heinz Ketchup, as the company celebrates the condiment’s 150th anniversary.

The spot, which launched on April 8, tells the tale of a potato’s journey from farm to table, starting out as a single spud and eventually hooking up with ketchup. The anthropomorphic smiling potato is transported by bumpy truck ride in a crate with hundreds of its colleagues, ending up in a kitchen. It’s scrubbed down, dunked in the sink and ends up as a plate of dinner fries. That’s where it meets its “True Love,” in the form of ketchup, poured all over the meal all set to Heart’s 80s hit, “What about Love?”

“You only turn 150 once, so we’ve been thinking about how best to celebrate the milestone with our brand fans for almost a year,” says Nina Patel, head of brand build communications & innovation at Kraft Heinz Canada. “And this year the strategy behind the campaign was to reinforce the deep emotional connection fans have with Heinz Ketchup in a clever way.”

Patel tells strategy that its previous campaign, “Pour,” was more functionally driven in terms of messaging, focusing more on taste appeal and anticipation when the bottle is poured. In the 2019 campaign, she says the company wanted a more emotionally-charged feel for the brand.

Patel says that to validate consumer insights, Kraft Heinz completed ad pre-testing that it says was shown to drive positive emotional affinity and persuasion.

“True Love” kicked off in TV and digital on April 8th and continues through the summer to coincide with BBQ season, says Patel. It will air until July 16 on TV, OLV, digital banners. Rethink handled the creative and Starcom did the media.

According to 2017 Euromonitor data, Kraft Heinz’s domestic share of the ketchup market remains very strong, though it has fallen from 84% to 76% over the previous two years. Competitor French’s, owned by Maryland-based McCormick & Co, has seen its share double to nearly 7% during the same period.