How Nutella’s First Branded Content Series Will Spread Happiness

Tells the story of a cupcake and a garbage man

Feeling down? Nutella has something that might help. The hazelnut spread has released its first branded content effort, a documentary series from creative shop Brand Programming Studios, that's meant to make consumers happy. 

With the series, "Spread the Happy," Nutella is looking to "celebrate real people and real stories," explained Eric Berger, marketing director for Nutella USA. The release of the series is timed to the holiday season. There are four episodes total with a new one released each week on the brand's YouTube channel. 

"We don't want to fabricate anything," said Berger. "This is definitely not an ad campaign, we're trying to take the branding out of it as much as possible. We're really trying to communicate the happiness message. You'll notice that these are not ads—it's a webseries brought to consumers by Nutella so we're not trying to brand it. We're just generally trying to spread happiness and inspire others to do the same."  

The first episode, "Brooklyn and Delvar," shows how a young girl tries to make her local garbage man feel special on her birthday. The creative shop behind the series approached it as if it were planning a television show rather than an ad campaign, according to Geoffrey DeStefano, CEO of Brand Programming Studios. 

"This is our first season, we're already planning out a second season," said DeStefano. "It was really about finding these everyday stories of real people that are going out of their way to spread happiness, whether that's through their creativity or their personality or through general acts of kindness or through some other philanthropic way as well." 

Here's an overview from the brand of the series' episodes: 

  • Brooklyn and Delvar (above): A special friendship forms between three-year-old Brooklyn and Delvar, the local garbage man, when she gifts him a cupcake for her birthday.
  • Boys with a Purpose: Deep in the heart of South Carolina, Raymond Nelson and Kenneth Joyner started Boys with a Purpose to teach boys how to become proper gentlemen by living up to the organization's motto: "Look good, feel good, do good."
  • Pay it Forward: Attorney Marty Burbank and his wife Seon decide to forego buying an expensive sailboat, and instead, invest in the future college education of a kindergarten class of 27 lower-income students.
  • Echosmith: Famed family pop group Echosmith talks about its mission to spread love, joy and happiness through its music, and bring together family and friends for a special evening to say thanks for all the support.