Oreo’s Mini Delivery campaign, in which 500 personalized parcels a day are up for grabs for two weeks, highlights the concept of scarcity as a marketing tool and should generate a small number of highly qualified consumer recipients, experts say.
Oreo Mini is celebrating the little things in life and asking fans to recognize small gestures by visiting a microsite, Oreo Mini Delivery, and sending cookies and personalized notes to special people.
In the program, 500 Oreo Mini parcels will be available each day on a first-come-first-served basis on weekdays between August 11 and August 22.
The brand says these packages come from "the tiniest mini mart there ever was," which was featured in a video that debuted in June, "Mel's Mini-Mini Mart," and which, as of August 12, has 1.3 million views.
According to the brand, the moral of the video is that "It's not how you're built, but what's deep inside that makes us all Wonderfilled."
The packages sold out each of the first two days, generating a message on the site that says, "Aw man! Looks like we're out of Mini Parcels for today. Don't worry, though, there'll be more available each weekday at 12 pm EST. In the meantime, you can post an Oreo Mini GIFt!" with links to shareable GIFs on Facebook, Twitter, and Tumblr.
By limiting the quantity of goods available as well as the campaign time frame, Paul Chaney, principal of boutique agency Chaney Marketing Group, says the effort builds on the scarcity heuristic.
"The idea being that the less there is of something the more we want it. Or, the harder it is to get, the more desirable it becomes," Chaney says, citing the examples of Gmail using invites to bring on early users and Victoria's Secret doling out a limited number of gift cards valued from $10 to $500 over a two-week period on Facebook.
"Getting the [Victoria's Secret] card was hard enough, but coupled with the mystery of not knowing its value only added to the intrigue," Chaney adds.
For his part, senior digital strategy advisor Augustine Fou calls Oreo Mini Delivery "user-qualified sampling," and says it is a "nice gimmick," but it won't have any impact on actual sales because it is a small effort.
"Instead of sending out samples to 100,000 people from a mailing list, it is getting X individuals to send Mini Oreos to friends that might actually appreciate it," he says. "The key takeaway for digital marketers...is to let people share something with one or two others they know will appreciate it...just know that the volumes will be tiny, but...highly qualified."
According to an Oreo rep, Mini Oreos have been available for a number of years, but the brand is "excited" about new packaging and the permanent addition of the Reese's flavor.
"It's our fans' passion and enthusiasm that continuously challenge us to create new and exciting ways to celebrate with them every day," the rep says. "The Oreo Mini Delivery program is another example of our continued mission to celebrate the special little things all around us that can sometimes go overlooked."
In a related effort, the brand is also sending Oreo Mini parcels to 50 tiny towns in the U.S. that often get overlooked as well.
For his part, Jason Burby president of the Americas at digital agency Possible, notes the timing of this campaign is interesting.
"The Mini snack packs are ideal for kids' lunches or college students. While they don't seem to be calling it out specifically, as moms around the country are starting to think school lunches and back to school, Oreo obviously wants these snack packs on their minds," he says. "I don't think it is just a coincidence in timing that they are focusing on the Mini right now."
The brand is using the hashtag #MiniDelivery to push the effort on Twitter.
Oreo is a Mondelēz International brand.
In addition to ClickZ and Search Engine Watch, Lisa's work has appeared in The Huffington Post, The Luxury Spot, LearnVest, MarthaStewart.com, GoodHousekeeping.com, amNewYork, and The Wall Street Journal. She's a graduate of Columbia's School of Journalism.
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