Agility, innovation and guacamole: Q+A with Avocados From Mexico's Ivonne Kinser
Avocados From Mexico is back for its fourth Super Bowl and this year's campaign is its biggest yet. Just before the game, we talked to Ivonne Kinser, Avocados From Mexico's head of digital marketing, about the agility and innovation it takes to stand out among much bigger brands.
Coming into the Super Bowl, Avocados From Mexico is in arguably the most unique position of any advertiser. Produce is a category with very little brand awareness and Avocados From Mexico only sells one product. Oh, and they have virtually no competitors. For part of the year, including now, Mexican avocados are the only ones in season.
Avocados From Mexico appeared in its first Super Bowl three years ago, with God announcing that Mexico selected the avocado in the first draft ever. The brand’s irreverent, wacky humor stood out and earned more than 1 billion media impressions. Only Procter & Gamble’s “Like A Girl” earned more that year, according to Adobe Social.
The brand has returned to every Big Game since, getting bigger each year. A day before Super Bowl LII, this year’s campaign was already up to 3.2 billion impression. We spoke with the Avocados From Mexico’s Head of Digital Marketing, Ivonne Kinser, about the innovation and agility it takes to stand out among much larger competitors, and what goes best with guacamole (everything).
ClickZ: It’s your fourth Super Bowl. How is your approach different this year?
Ivonne Kinser: We have a dedication and passion that’s a borderline obsession because we appreciate the opportunity of competing with the big brands. Last year, YouGov created three charts a month after the Super Bowl. Avocados From Mexico was the only brand that showed a significant, statistical increase in word of mouth, buzz and purchase consideration. What if they don’t do make those charts again?
That led me to say, this year, I don’t want to rely on a third-party. I want to do it myself, so we’re working with Nielsen to see how the conversation is going to benefit our goals of building a brand and increasing consumption of avocados. I myself can tell you who likes us and exactly how the conversation is going.
CZ: That’s pretty noteworthy that you increased in those categories since you always read about brands getting tons of social media impressions that don’t necessarily turn into anything.
IK: We marketers need to push for metrics that matter. It’s great to have what we call ‘engagement,’ but what does that mean? If someone clicks the like button on Facebook, what does it do for my brand in terms of the important things, like brand recognition, brand recall and purchase intention? If we can see how our success is reflected in those metrics, we have done a phenomenal job.
CZ: You do still have great engagement on social media, though. We retweeted Avocados From Mexico and got a reply within seconds that had a recipe for guacamole. And now we want guacamole.
IK: We’re a small player so we have to roll up our sleeves and be scrappy. We value interactions with consumers because we don’t have the paid media budget to deliver the message millions of times. Our goal is to convert every interaction into a conversation. And that conversation is always relevant not only to the Super Bowl, but to our core message, which is recipes. ‘Avocados are an ingredient and here’s what you can do with them.’
CZ: ‘Avocados as an ingredient’ is the theme of this year’s campaign. Can you tell us more about GuacWorld?
IK: Guacamole is too wonderful to be confined to a bowl! We want consumers to think beyond the bowl because you can put guac on pretty much anything. This year, we partnered with The Electric Factory, a really innovative company from Uruguay, to create this digital world where everything is perfect and guacamole goes with everything. Through every single touchpoint on the platform, each experience is engineered so that the content is amplified as consumers interact with the campaign.
CZ: How does the Picmoji fit in with the campaign?
IK: It’s a new patent-pending technology that a company called Inmoji developed for us. It combines selfies and emojis, and when you send one to a friend and they click on your emoji, they land on our SuperBowl platform. Emojis are the language of consumers today, but we don’t have the money to just spend on something cute that won’t drive performance.
Picmoji is in a very unique position to deliver over 100% click-through rate. When you send something to a friend via text, it’s very likely they’re going to click on it. When you send another text to that friend, they’re going to see the previous message because it’s still right there. It’s extremely innovative and efficient.
CZ: What’s the number one thing that helps Avocados From Mexico succeed?
IK: Our ways work because we’re lean, fast and agile, with no red tape. That’s because we’re not organized in silos. If SEO is on one side and social media has different people somewhere else, how in the world can you make that work? The consumer goes across every channel seamlessly and you have to build your organization in the same way.
At Avocados From Mexico, we never think of platforms in isolation. We make every channel work with each other because if you isolate them, they lose their strength. We look at the digital ecosystem as a whole. Every channel works together to benefit the overarching objectives of the organization.