Danone plays on two heritages to boost Oikos

Canadian cultural cues and product sourcing get incorporated into the brand's Mediterranean roots.

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Danone is blending Greek and Canadian traditions with its latest campaign for its flagship Oikos brand.

The latest spot substitutes yogurt-infused snacks for the typical hockey gathering fare, and even has a guy break out a bouzouki (a traditional Greek instrument) for a rendition of the stadium anthem, “Charge.”

“It goes beyond hockey,” explains Éric Maffert, senior marketing manager of the dairy portfolio at Danone Canada. “The goal of the campaign is to showcase how Oikos is the perfect mix between Greek and Canadian tradition.”

According to Maffert, Danone sets itself apart by respecting tradition and producing fresh, creamy yogurt with a focus on simple, quality ingredients. Oikos has a Mediterranean heritage, he says, which has been a focus of previous campaigns throughout the years.

In 2020, Danone rebranded and repositioned Oikos to emphasize its creaminess and role as an ingredient in recipes. The push for foodies was an effort to boost growth, as the Greek segment was not growing as rapidly as other yogurt categories and flat prior to lockdowns.

The new campaign maintains that focus on recipe versatility, and since people enjoy sharing traditions that revolve around food, adds in other traditions, such as music or sport, to build up the Canadian connection.

But despite the cultural cues, the campaign ultimately still comes back to food. Maffert explains that in the campaign, Danone wants people to “taste authenticity,” whether it’s Greek recipes or fresh, Canadian milk.

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The Greek yogurt segment is very important to Danone and is now growing, with Oikos lead share, Maffert says, as Canadians are looking to incorporate healthier options into their diet, even more so since COVID hit.

Lg2 led the campaign after first working with Danone last year, both on Oikos and a campaign for Danone’s Activia brand.

The marketing mix is geared to adults 25 to 35, and includes TV, media partnerships, online video and display ads, as well as social content on Facebook, Instagram, TikTok. There’s also an in-store campaign. Wavemaker handled the buy.

The ad spend is in line with previous efforts, Maffert says.