Off to a Good Start (BRONZE)

Client Credits: Danone Inc.
PAULINE VARGA – Vice-President, Marketing
ALEXANDRA KUNZ – Assistant Brand Manager
PHILIPPE TREMBLAY – Lead media and digital strategy

Agency Credits: Saint Jacques Vallée Y&R
ÉLYSE BOULET – Vice-President, Account Services
LYNE CHAMPOUX and EDITH SAGBO - Account Managers
PIERRE NOLIN – Vice-President, Executive Creative Director
CARAT: Media Strategy and Media Buying
401: Production House
APPOLO: Music and Sound Design
BAM: Digital Executions


Business Results Period (Consecutive Months):January 2015 – July 2015
Start of Advertising/Communication Effort: January 2015
Base Period as a Benchmark: 2014 calendar year

a) Overall Assessment

Four years ago, you probably knew very little about Greek yogurt. This should not be the case anymore. By 2014, Greek yogurt had become the largest earning segment in the yogurt category, growing exponentially from a $15.6 share in 2012 to a $27.3 share in 20141. The segment reached a certain degree of maturity in 2014, when the competition among all the brands had never been as strong. An extraordinarily wide array of new players, from national brands to niche products to private labels, had entered the market, hoping to get a piece of the cake. The stakes in the level of advertising had never been so high, especially with the arrival of Iögo on the market and its unprecedented advertising budget for yogurt ($70M) as well as the unveiling of the re-launch campaign of Liberté’s own Greek yogurt, OIKOS’ main competitor in the fall of 2014.

Due to the straining method used to produce Greek yogurt, its price tag for consumers was higher than for most other types of yogurt, creating a barrier to achieve more growth in an extremely fierce segment. Another important fact was that most Greek yogurts share the same claims: high in protein, low in fat and thicker texture. Brand positioning and imagery then became key to break through the clutter in this highly commoditized segment. The segment was loved and consumers were really loyal to it, but they did not see any differentiation from one brand to another.

OIKOS, the number one Greek yogurt in Canada2, saw its market share starting to decrease in 20143.

In order to remain the segment leader and get back to growing its $ share, we had to enhance OIKOS’ positioning to make sure it would be perceived as different and superior to its competitors.

b) Resulting Business Objectives

  1. Solidify a leadership position across Canada – emphasis on British Columbia and Québec – earning 5 points of market share by the end of Q1, 2015.
  2. Get baseline back to growth within the first 6 months of the campaign
  3. Push relevance
  4. Drive engagement via global creative ideas
  5. Build uniqueness of the brand

c) Annual Media Budget
$3 - $4 million

d) Geographic Area

1. Nielsen, YTD ending December 2014, Market Share Value $, Total Canada.
2. Nielsen Value $ Market Share, Greek Segment, YTD ending December 2013, 2014.
3. Nielsen Value $ Market Share, Greek Segment, June 2014.

a) Analysis and Insight

In order to reassess the brand’s positioning and communications strategy and reacquire our dominant position, we started off by looking at our target.

When OIKOS was launched, our target group was quite large and, due to the product’s higher price point, focused on an older clientele with a large disposable income. With the popularity of Greek yogurt, global health and nutrition trends, our product had a strong potential for growth amongst a younger clientele. We looked at the “late Millennials” segment (W 58% - M 42% | AGE: 29-39), who had an HHI of $100K+. The fit seemed very promising. We validated their frame of mind: they are hungry for life, health equals feeling good to them, they are connected, and their motivation is to seek new experiences and knowledge. They can be very loyal to brands that make them feel good and look good4.


We decided to do qualitative and ethnographic research in our key markets (Toronto, Montréal and Vancouver) in order to discuss these different topics with late Millennials.


Our research found that they are happy with their life. Freedom as they used to know it is gone, but they don’t mind. They feel that they do not have enough time, but they love to indulge and enjoy the free time that they do have. This is especially true when it comes to food. Their relationship with brands are summed up by never wanting to compromise on quality. They make smart choices and value tradition, expertise, the “real thing”. For them, originality equals authenticity. Defined by technology, this generation is confident and was raised to feel priviledged. Therefore, Millennials LOVE products that promote this feeling5.


Our second task to achieve our goal was to get a deeper understanding of our competition and of our brand’s assets and points of differentiation. Through research6, we found that, functionally, OIKOS and Liberté (by far our biggest challenger) are both seen as very good, high quality brands. Users simply have a preference for one flavour or texture. OIKOS’ points of differentiation were:


  • The perception that it is the most authentic brand – as supported by its name, the Greek-inspired design of the blue and white packaging as well as its past advertising campaigns (the Mediterranean setting, the conveyed freshness, the tone and manner of the spots).
  • The fact that it offers unusual flavours, i.e. OIKOS goes beyond the basics.


There did not seem to be any hard barriers to the brand. However, compared with Liberté, the brand’s image and character were seen as slightly more distant and not as modern.


Our findings also revealed a third element to help us achieve our goal. The snacking moments and opportunities shared by our target audience also aligned with what we had learned in our research into snacking habits. Snacking was a big, growing trend. The use of Greek yogurt had changed in recent years. Starting out as a versatile ingredient used in many recipes, it was now mostly consumed as a snack. Positioning OIKOS specifically as a snack could make the brand appear even more relevant to consumers – especially considering that snacking was not only a function of hunger but also of emotions and mind (“I snack for physical, emotional, and psychological reasons.”7) 


How could we apply all of those findings to the simple act of eating a yogurt? We summarized our insight as follows: “For me, eating is one of the BEST PLEASURES IN LIFE. Whether consuming a big meal or a small snack, it has to be an experience, every time.


As functionality gave us no strong point of differentiation, we decided to focus on the emotional level. And as the area of snacking was so promising, it had to be at the center of our efforts.

b) Communication Strategy

Since the launch of the brand, we fed our target audience’s curiosity about the origin and the story in which the benefits of OIKOS are embedded. We wanted to do it in a renewed way. Building on the snack size this time, we decided to single out and personalize the experience. Eating an OIKOS yogurt becomes a story that begins with the first mouthful and ends when the cup is empty: it is an invitation to live a unique and authentic moment that lasts the duration of a satisfactory break. OIKOS thus fills more than your cravings; it also satisfies your hunger for escape, the time of a break.


Our brand positioning would then follow the same path as our insight, putting OIKOS at the center of the proposition: “OIKOS, THE dream snack, inspired by the authentic Greek art of living well.


All of this would have to be conveyed in smart, fun and bold ways to connect with the late Millennials and create interactions and engagement. We needed to modernize our image while taking into account the brand’s equity. After all, we were still number one! You do not throw away everything that you have built for your brand and that has worked so well for it in until then. We needed to pick the right ingredients from our recipe, showcase fresh news to create excitement and update our recipe with a renewed tone and manner as well as clever formats.

4. Ipsos Next Quali, August 2014.
5. Idem.
6. IPSOS, PROJECT OIKOS BONDS & BARRIERS, Qualitative Report, May 2014.
7. Idem.

a) Media Used

See Oikos_Blocking Chart_January-July 2015.pdf in attachment.

b) Creative Discussion


Opening a pot of OIKOS is an experience in itself. It is a dream snack, from the first to the last mouthful. It is a moment frozen in time, a little escape.


Our new offensive was aiming to position OIKOS as the ideal snack. The authenticity, the Mediterranean lifestyle and the Greek inspiration are still part of the story. Canadians love the idea of the Mediterranean way of life. They love the idea of indulging, but feel guilty when they do because of their need to stay healthy; however, in the Mediterranean lifestyle, that all seems to blend together. It is something they dream of achieving, but it is so hard to do in our society8. OIKOS would enable them to escape reality for a moment, just the time it takes for them to eat their snack. Unpretentious, authentic and friendly, and now presented with a more humorous tone. The campaign revolves around 3 pillars:

  • The Dream: A dream is rooted in a need and/or a profound desire. The OIKOS

dream is anchored in this definition as it answers a need for satiety, good taste and balance. The desire in itself becomes our playground. It is to indulge in daydreams or fantasies and let our mind wander. OIKOS’ Dream equals pure enjoyment. It is not realistic; it is using humour to showcase situations that are unlikely to happen.

  • Double device: OIKOS is the hero of the story. The one that triggers the action. The first mouthful takes us elsewhere. The “scratching” noise of the spoon that scrapes the bottom of the empty pot brings us back to reality.
  • Humour: It is part of the campaign’s DNA. It is clever, surprising, amusing but never falls into slapstick.


The new TV spot features a man eating yogurt and getting seduced by a beautiful young woman, with Greece as a backdrop. The illusion is shattered when it is revealed that it was just a daydream brought on by OIKOS. The man reaches for another yogurt, but instead of finding his beautiful companion, he is confronted with another Greek stereotype as he is being sculpted, while partially naked, by an old man.

[See Oikos_Dream_VersionA_TV30s_EN.mov]

To engage with our target audience, consumers become part of the story with a “choose your own adventure” version. The viewer is invited to head online to see if the main character from the spot can find his love, with different flavours bringing him into different daydreams.

[See OLV in attachment]

On YouTube, the brand’s spot has 11 different endings, all anchored in Greek mythology and culture (including everything from Icarus falling from the sky to Poseidon standing on a beach). There is also a discount coupon hidden within the different endings for the consumers to find.


On social media, OIKOS’ fans are held spellbound with a video that looks like a movie trailer. A series of posts incorporating unpublished scenes of the shoot, our characters’ stories and a contest made consumers react and interact.


To convey some fresh news about the brand and to showcase the different available flavours (important purchase drivers for the consumers), we displayed the different formats on OOH executions along with creative headlines that tied in with the campaign.



Finally, for the second TV and online video flights that started last May, we changed the video endings to showcase the alternate endings that were preferred on YouTube.

[See Oikos_Dream_VersionB_TV30s_EN.mov & Oikos_Dream_VersionC_TV30s_EN]

c) Media Discussion

Our goal was to reach and engage our core target, Millennials, as well as older demographics, with entertaining video contents. The campaign was meticulously built in 3 phases:

  • Quickly build reach and impact
    • Conventional and specialty TV buy, carefully crafted to maximize reach and control frequency to an optimal amount
    • Forced and skippable online video ads with broad reach and frequency capping to maximize reach with thorough optimization process based on completed views and alternate endings views
  • Boost engagement and frequency
    • Leveraging re-targeting functionalities with different alternate endings and teasers were presented to the engaged (vs. non-engaged) users to stimulate additional video views.
  • Reward and drive sales
    • Engaged users were presented with a coupon video, an offer available exclusively to them.

The video campaign was supported by:

  • OOH: To communicate new formats and flavours with inspiring visuals and extend reach
  • SOCIAL MEDIA: To push engagement further with our fans, we invited them to vote for their favourite alternate ending and built a contest around it
  • SEM: To reach consumers in a more informative way, to communicate specific product features, benefits and portfolio information.



Reach: 3.1 Million UVs

Over 12.7 Million Impressions

Over 5.7 Million Video Views

Completion Rate of 55%

Frequency of 4.0 (A25-44, HHI $75K+)9 


1.5% interaction rate on alternate endings (vs. 1% YouTube Benchmark – annotations) with users who interacted seeing an average of 5 alternate ending videos out of the 10 available.

8. Oikos Canada Strategic Framework by BNC, May 2013.
9. Comscore, April 29, 2015, and DDM + Adwords + TubeMogul.

a) Sales/Share Results

The Q1 results were pretty impressive. In March, the brand experienced a +21% increase in sales vs. the previous year. A gain of 7% of $ share10 outperforming our objective.


Knowing that each point gain is harder to get when you are already the market leader, these results were exceptional. Specifically in Québec, OIKOS gained 13% in $ volume and 0.7pts in $ share for the first 6 months. In British Columbia, in the first 6 months of the campaign, the brand not only maintained its leadership position but also increased the gap with Liberté: 15% in $ volume and 2.7pts in $ share.


As for baseline metrics, the results are truly spectacular, showing a complete trend reversal, from being negative for the last 12 periods of 2014 to reaching +5% for the first 6 months of the year.


b) Consumption/ Usage Results

Our digital campaign also delivered well11 vs. our media KPIs, and exceeded all benchmarks.

Reach: 3.135.080 Million UVs

Over 12.7 Million Impressions

Over 5.7 Million Video Views

Completion Rate of 55%

Average View Rate of 45.5%

  • Forced pre-roll at 90%
  • Skippable pre-roll at 25%

Frequency of 4.0 (A25-44, HHI $75K+)12

c) Other Pertinent Results

While the Greek segment growth stabilized in 2014, there were more players than ever. 

d) Return on Investment

To the degree that confidentiality permits, you should do your best to monetize your results, for example by discussing incremental revenue in comparison with investment.

Since the beginning of the campaign, the net revenue of the brand has increased by 10% vs. same period last year. 

10. Nielsen, YTD ending April 4, 2015, total Canada.
11. Comscore, April 29, 2015, and DDM + Adwords + TubeMogul.
12. Idem.

a) General Discussion

The TV spot was pre-tested13 and achieved great results on impactful metrics.


  • High enthusiasm on: certain purchase intent and positive brand opinion.
  • Frequency
  • Lift on positive opinion about OIKOS


HIGH IMPACT (visibility and brand link)

  • Visibility superior vs. norm
  • Brand link highly superior vs. norm


Superior (by far!) vs. norm and for all the sub-groups (even more pronounced with core target) => Will increase engagement and equity.



Those who saw and linked the campaign have higher awareness levels and a stronger intention to purchase OIKOS (non-users). The campaign also positively reinforced the consumers’ proximity feeling with the brand.

b) Excluding Other Factors
Spending Levels:

Increase in media budget.


No significant change in the distribution or the price point.

Distribution Changes:

No significant change in the distribution or the price point.

Unusual Promotional Activity:


Other Potential Causes:

Promotions are heavily used by all brands in the yogurt category. However, the sales results show that most of our market share gains were within baseline, therefore indicating the direct link between advertising and sales increase.  See Base Vol: Growth graphic.

13. IPSOS, NEXT QUALI, August 2014.
14. IPSOS Oikos “Dream Snack” Advertising Post-Test- Research Report, April 2015.