Colgate Is Running a Clever Upside-Down Snapchat Ad to Promote Water Conservation

The campaign coincides with World Water Day

The toothpaste brand has found a cool way to push its message via mobile.

Snapchat will make $770 million in ad revenue this year, according to eMarketer’s updated forecast. That’s $30 million less than it projected in the fall of 2016. But it still represents a 157 percent year-over-year revenue increase for Snap, the app’s parent company that recently went public. 

So while there will be an increasing number of brands testing the mobile app’s Snap Ads, the 10-second, vertical videos that have sold on Snapchat’s API since October, one of the company’s challenges will be getting big brands to create custom content for that format. 

Colgate, though, is not one of them.

Led by Red Fuse, which is part of WPP and is Colgate-Palmolive’s dedicated agency, the toothpaste marketer is running a Snap Ad that features water in a bathroom sink flowing upward along with the following copy—but upside-down:

is all it takes to turn the faucet is all it takes to turn the faucet
Brush with a closed faucet Brush with a closed faucet
to save up to 4 gallons of water

Indeed, the ad aims to start a conversation about water conservation. It started on Tuesday and runs through Thursday, highlighting World Water Day, which is on Wednesday.

Since Snap Ads run with sound by default, most of Colgate’s viewers heard 10 seconds of running water accompanied by the sound of someone brushing his or her teeth. The brand’s logo, it should be noted, is not upside in the ad.

“We were experimenting with the engaging nature of the platform, attempting to get the millennial target to physically interact with our ad, which reinforces Colgate’s message to close the faucet while you brush to save four gallons of water,” Scott Campbell, general manager of integrated marketing communications for Colgate North America, said in an email.

While it appears to be the first predominantly upside-down Snapchat ad, there will probably be bunches of brands in 2017 trying such tricks on the millennial-friendly platform. If it gets to $770 million or more, you can bank on that idea.

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