This is not your father’s Baskin-Robbins. Unless he’s one of those dads who really loves to embarrass you by singing along to Ariana Grande at full volume in the car.
The ice cream brand’s newest campaign, “Baskin-Robbins Got Me Like,” revels in the meme culture of the moment by embracing not just a popular piece of lingo, but also bright and GIF-friendly imagery that, regardless of your feelings on them, are certain to get your attention. There will be more than 50 animations and images, created in partnership with content studio Psyop.
Cringey? Probably. Likely to get people talking, ranting or emoji-eyerolling in social about Baskin-Robbins? Almost definitely.
“We set out to create a campaign that gets attention and gets people talking about the brand in a new and different way,” Curt Mueller, svp and creative director at 22squared, says in a statement. “Our partners at Baskin-Robbins had the vision and passion to embrace a totally new creative direction. Our friends at Psyop helped us create an entirely new language for the brand; one that represents how we want a younger audience to see Baskin-Robbins, an iconic brand with a rich history.”
While that rich history is less of a campaign centerpiece than, say, the twerking ice cream cone and rotund dancing man, the client feels it’s a perfect modern expression of the way Baskin-Robbins has made young people feel for decades.
“Our new ‘Baskin-Robbins Got Me Like’ campaign does a great job of translating the joy our customers feel when they visit our shops into our advertising in a way that is fresh and relevant for today’s consumer,” says Dave Nagel, senior director of consumer engagement for Baskin-Robbins. “The joyful spirit of the work is contagious, and we feel it truly celebrates all of the delicious ways guests can enjoy our premium ice cream flavors in-store.”
The chain has maintained very high brand awareness over the years, but it hasn’t been as much of high-demand destination for younger millennials and Gen Z, says 22squared account manager Ashley Keetle.
“They feel that Baskin isn’t as relevant to them today, and obviously we need to change that,” she says. “So we intentionally made the campaign edgier than the brand is known for, tapping into the internet language intentionally to reach that new audience.”
Given that Baskin-Robbins was founded in 1945, this sudden ultra-modern approach might seem a bit unexpected to some observers, but the brand and agency knew there were risks inherent in taking a bold new approach.
“Whenever a brand makes a big change, and we are going from very conservative work,” Keetle says, “you have conversations about, ‘What are the pros and cons of this? Are we willing to take a more edgy stand?’ And across the board, the answer has been a resounding ‘yes.'”
The media mix for the campaign will be split between millennial and Gen Z audiences, with ads appearing on TV networks like A&E, AMC, BET, Comedy Central, Food Network and FX, while digital content runs on Hulu, Roku, Snapchat, Instagram, Tinder, Pandora, Spotify and more.
Before you fire up your Steve Buscemi skateboard or “nope” GIF of choice, check out the spots below and just try to get that song out of your head for the rest of the day.
Campaign Title: Baskin-Robbins Got Me Like
Agency Location: Atlanta
Executive Creative Director: Al Patton
Creative Director/Copywriter: Curt Mueller
Associate Creative Director/Copywriter: Alex Lukacs
Senior Art Director: Pete Kehr
Executive Producer: Matt Silliman
Production Coordinator: Patrick Clarici
Executive Director Account Management: Annette Sally
Account Director: Ashley Keetle
Production Companies: Psyop/Oona Media
Directors: Georgia Tribuiani & Trevor Conrad
Chief Executive Producer: Justin Booth-Clibborn
Executive Producers: Monica Reimold/Josh Courtney
Producer: Desiree Laufasa
Postproduction Producer: Nathan Lupetow
Music Composition: HiFi Project
Executive Producer/ Music Supervisor – Jack Bradley
Composer/Producer/Writer – Max Petrek
Audio Engineering SFX, VO record and Mix
Buddy Hall – Executive Producer
Chris Nicholson (C2) Sound Designer/Engineer
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