SnackWell’s New Ads by Foote, Cone & Belding Abandon the Cookie Man but Keep the Humor

Neither Prince Charming nor sex on the beach can keep women away from their SnackWell’s, according to a tongue-in-cheek new campaign from Foote, Cone & Belding.
Nabisco Biscuit Co. will support the campaign, which breaks nationally today, with $30-35 million in 1998. The ads are the first since 1993 that do not feature Cookie Man, a character who was repeatedly besieged by women trying to get their hands on SnackWell’s in previous ads.
The first spot from the New York shop, “Out of Body Experience,” features a couple frolicking in the surf. The woman’s eyes, initially locked on her man, drift to a box of peanut butter chip cookies in the sand. She proceeds to have an out-of-body experience, enabling one part of her to get to the cookies while the other remains in the ocean.
A second spot, “Prince Charming,” shows a woman entrenched in a romance novel while eating a devil’s food cake cookie. As she reads, a handsome man rides a white horse through Manhattan to her home. When he sees her cookies, she hugs the box and he turns into a frog.
The new tagline is: “Passion. Desire. Devotion. Nah, it goes way beyond that.” It replaces “Can we ever make enough?”
Sandy Greenberg, FCB’s senior vice president, was the copywriter on the campaign; senior vice president Terri Meyer was the art director.
Terry Preskar, SnackWell’s senior business director, said that while the Cookie Man campaign was a success, increased competition in the category, coupled with new products and heightened consumer expectations, prompted a new campaign.
SnackWell’s sales for the year ending in June were $192 million, a 5.3 percent share, down 9.9 percent from the prior year. It is the fourth best-seller in the cookie category, according to Information Resources. The top brand is Nabisco’s Oreo with sales of $340 million, up 13.3 percent for a share of 9.5 percent.