MadeGood launches first brand platform to ‘un-wreck the future’

Kids brainstorm ideas about how to solve food insecurity, which the healthy snack brand hopes will help it stand out as it grows.

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Snack brand MadeGood is speaking up about its efforts to create a better world for future generations, with a new brand platform enlisting the optimism of youth to find the right path forward.

The better-for-you brand’s first mass campaign, running in both Canada and the U.S., is the first phase of the “Un-wreck The Future” platform, aimed at tackling different issues that will make a healthier, safer and more equitable future. The two-minute anchor spot features a group of kids inspired by news reports of climate change and natural disasters to do something to make the future less bleak, settling on food insecurity – the focus of the platform’s first year.

Some of the ideas – such as putting stamps on packaging to make sending food to people in need easier, asking aliens for help or simply growing food to be bigger – are the kind of whimsical ideas you’d expect to get after putting a group of kids together. But others are downright practical, such as requiring food companies to send a portion of what they make to food banks.

In either case, the message of the campaign is that even though the issue is so big that there are no easy answers – 1.7 million Canadians and 42 million Americans now face food insecurity – it is welcoming any and all ideas from people who are invested in making the future better.

The campaign was led by Broken Heart Love Affair, which won MadeGood’s business earlier this year. Sister agency Lifelong Crush is handling digital, with Hype supporting PR in Canada, Coast handling PR in the U.S. and Epitaph on the media buy.

Milana Kleidman, brand manager for MadeGood, says the brand’s marketing previously focused on its functional benefits – that it was organic, nut free, gluten free, vegan and free from the top eight most common allergens, as well as nutritional benefits that are important to parents.

But with ambitious goals for growth in North America over the next five years, it was time to create a deeper connection with consumers. And while its target of millennial parents are concerned about the food they feed their children, they are also concerned citizens more broadly, and what the future will look like for children is often top of mind.

“We are in a competitive category so we wanted to differentiate ourselves by bringing the values of the organization to the forefront,” Kleidman says. “We have always taken action, but have been incredibly humble and quiet about it. This campaign gives us an opportunity to speak out about the actions that we are taking, while also identifying our shortcomings. We see this campaign as an opportunity to support a movement already in progress and help inspire others to do the same.”

MadeGood is a certified B-corp and has also received a “Future Fit” designation as a business whose purpose doesn’t cause harm to the environment or society. It is also only the third Canadian company to receive a TRUE Zero Waste designation.

Expanding to the U.S. is both the Concord, Ontario-based brand’s biggest opportunity and challenge right now, as the market is very cluttered. But Kleidman says the campaign is both bold and inspiring enough to stand out and drive awareness. She adds that the platform is meant to evolve with the brand and has a built-in ability to shift focus to other ways to “un-wreck” the future. Food insecurity was chosen as the initial focus because it is an issue that resonates broadly for both new and existing customers, with a direct impact on “what the future holds for all.”

That also holds true for Gen Z, a group Kleidman says is already active in the cause and which the brand is also targeting with the campaign.

To that end, MadeGood released a call to action earlier this week, amplified by a number of young ambassadors it recruited who have previously made their own efforts to reduce food security. Youth who are inspired to shape the future are being invited to upload a one-minute video detailing steps they’ve already taken to address food insecurity in their community and identifying any local causes they feel can benefit from support. In addition to each participant receiving one MadeGood product, the company will use the videos to identify causes most deserving of up to $100,000 of in-kind donations.

“MadeGood is clear that they cannot do this alone, nor do they believe that they are the only ones who can solve this issue,” says Jay Chaney, CSO at Broken Heart Love Affair. “This needs to be a collective effort. The videos serve as awareness of the need and inspiration to act. The outreach will be an extension of this program to ensure that others join, share their ideas and ultimately make strides to a better future for all of us.”

In addition to the two-minute brand film, the campaign also includes six-, 15-, 30- and 60-second videos. It is running on online channels, as well as cinemas (a good platform for the longer-form video) and fitness clubs (where consumers are open to a “better-for-you” product message). Kleidman says there has not been any changes to the media strategy based on any potential closures due to a fourth wave of the pandemic, but plans to remain agile should the situation change.