BC Dairy brings a new approach to the table

At-home cooking has prompted a shift at the association, which is zeroing in on meal time connections in a new campaign.
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A lot of dairy farmer associations are known for marketing that focuses on things like the health benefits of a glass of milk, but the pandemic has motivated BC Dairy to take a slightly wider view, looking at its role in mealtime, one of the most effective ways of bringing people together.

The new “It’s Ready” campaign features people – including a B.C. dairy farmer – being called to the dinner table in multiple languages, showing that meals are a gathering and connection point for friends and family across the province.

And while milk, butter and cheese aren’t given much of a direct shout-out, focusing more broadly on meals is based on the insight that dairy is a big part of the pandemic-related shift toward more home cooking and family meal times, according to Jennifer Woron, BC Dairy’s marketing director.

Pre-COVID, BC Dairy’s messaging was built around promoting specific dairy products. Now, Woron says, “how we show milk and dairy products has also shifted.”

“For us, the evolution of our messaging, and what you’ll see with this spot, is a lot more positive, and highlighting the role that meals can play in bringing people together and enjoying good company with family and friends,” Woron says.

Another key insight, Woron says, is that lockdowns have put more emphasis on where food come from, especially in British Columbia, whose residents are more apt to value something “from B.C.” versus a product merely being “from Canada.”

The campaign also features the phrase “it’s ready,” in Mandarin, Cantonese, Hindi and Punjabi.

“We started extending our campaigns with a multicultural component just before the pandemic,” Woron says, with the initial focus on Chinese language outreach, then South Asian.

The campaign was created by Taxi Vancouver, which also handled a rebranding effort. Dubbed a “barton” – a portmanteau of “barn” and “carton” – the logo is meant consolidate the previously-seperate BC Dairy Association and BC Milk brand identities into a single logo and brand.

Rebranding has been considered since last year, Woron says, with BC Dairy needing a clear and consistent look to replace both a corporate logo and a mark appearing on dairy product in the province.

This campaign, in market until July 25, is consistent with past ad spend efforts. Dairy products remain relevant all year-round, Woron says, and BC Dairy is aiming to have a more consistent, regular presence in the market.

With respect to the media mix, while there are TV elements for the campaign, Woron says OLV has been a strong performer that has delivered impact.

Taxi was supported on its creative efforts by Ethnicity Matters, which handled multicultural outreach. OMD is handling media.