Tracee Ellis Ross Talks to Her Snack Cabinet in New Lay’s Campaign

The actress is encouraging chip lovers to grab the bag that speaks to them

Still of Tracee Ellis Ross holding a bag of Lay
Lay’s personifies its products in its latest campaign Lay's
Headshot of Emmy Liederman

Lay’s wants to show its consumers that every bag—from classic yellow potato chips to the up-and-coming Poppables—brings its own unique joy.

In the brand’s latest campaign, actress Tracee Ellis Ross opens her pantry and wrestles over which snack to eat next while each bag takes turns pleading its case. The Wavy chip has a southern accent and an attitude, the Stax is a chill dude who uses surfer slang and the Kettle Cooked Flamin’ Hot’s raspy voice matches its loud personality.

The creative is Lay’s latest effort to connect with consumers through a light-hearted tone. Last month, Frito-Lay made its football season debut with a compilation of players in their pajamas, comparing the excitement of the NFL kickoff to the holiday season with a memorable rendition of “‘Twas the Night Before Christmas.” 

The snack conglomerate saw sales climb in Q3, as it reported $4.4 billion in net sales for the quarter ending Sept. 5, up from $4.1 billion the same time last year.

While consumers are still craving comfort foods, they have turned to snacks more than drinks throughout the pandemic. When restaurants and movie theaters closed, drink sales suffered the most, but the beverage unit has redeemed itself by returning to positive growth in Q3. In Q2, revenue for Frito-Lay North America climbed 7%, Quaker Foods North America rose 23% while the beverage unit fell behind, with revenue decreasing by 7%.

Lay’s recently redesigned its longtime look, which hadn’t been updated since the 2000s. In 2019, the brand gave consumers an inside look into its bag design process, explaining the thoughtful consideration that goes into every detail, from the Lay’s logo to the nutrition facts label on the back of the bag. The brand has expanded into a global snack giant since its launch in 1961, offering a wide variety of flavors and renditions that span beyond its standard classic chips.

Emmy is a senior journalism major at The College of New Jersey with minors in Spanish and broadcast journalism. She has previously worked as editor-in-chief of her college newspaper, The Signal, as well as an intern at Tribune Publishing Company. Emmy is looking forward to contributing to Adweek as an intern working with its breaking news and audience engagement teams.