Lay’s is bringing joy to Chinese Canadian shoppers

The PepsiCo snack brand has a pair of new, permanent SKUs meant to remind consumers of the look and taste of chips from China.


Frito-Lay Canada is expanding its multicultural chips portfolio, adding two Chinese-inspired flavours to the mix.

Spurred by the popularity of chips with Indian flavour profiles – Magic Masala and Cream & Onion – that it has previously tested, the CPG is making overtures to the Chinese Canadian consumer, adding Cucumber and Chicken & Tomato flavoured chips to its full-time lineup.

The launch includes prominent in-store displays that were timed to coincide with Lunar New Year celebrations – which began earlier this month and concluded on Tuesday – as well as a building wrap in Toronto’s Chinatown and influencer engagement.

“Canada is a proudly multicultural country, and we strive to provide Canada’s diverse population with familiar flavours that they know and love,” says Matt Webster, director of marketing at PepsiCo Foods Canada. “This year, we wanted to bring exciting new flavours to our permanent line-up that are two of the most popular in China.”


According to Webster, point of sale materials play an integral role in the campaign, and its in-store theatre and visually engaging displays help capture the attention of consumers who may otherwise not think to try a new potato chip flavour. Each POS asset has the tagline “Where there is family, there is Lay’s in the New Year!” in Simplified Chinese – but since the phonetic of Lay’s in Mandarin means “happy/joyful things,” it gives the tagline a double meaning.

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In honour of the Year of the Tiger, and as family gatherings are the most important tradition of the holiday, a graphic of a tiger family holding Lay’s was featured on the assets. In addition, red lanterns were used in the design, as they symbolize luck, happiness and prosperity in a variety of Chinese celebrations, including those after the New Year season is over. All creative materials include both English and Simplified Chinese.

The packaging strategy was to recreate the Lay’s China packaging instead of adding Chinese to Lay’s Canadian packaging, driving recognition of these iconic flavours from China.

“We needed to design a packaging architecture that communicated the flavours’ origin and celebrated its rich international history,” Webster says.

30016859_Lays_China_ChickenTomato_165g (1)The two new flavours are launching nationwide with a focus on precision execution in most-valuable stores that over-index with Chinese Canadian shoppers.

The brand’s influencer strategy was to partner with well-known foodies across Canada to taste the new flavours, as well as to target first generation Chinese Canadians through the social shopping platform, Little Red Book.

The Little Red Book platform operates similarly to Pinterest in the sense that it is a product search engine; however, there is more emphasis on community. “We thought it was the perfect opportunity to test out the platform and work with creators who are influencers in the space,” Webster says.

Koo Multicultural designed the key visual, which Mark IV leveraged to create breakthrough in-store theatre and key shopper tools. Koo’s sister agency Citizen Relations led the PR for the campaign.

Webster says it’s worked with Citizen Relations for over six years.