Gerber Is Using Social Ads and Empathy to Sell Its High-Tech Baby Formula Machine

Year-long campaign brims with digital

Gerber is launching a year-long digital advertising campaign today to promote a WiFi-enabled machine that makes baby formula. BabyNes works much like a Keurig coffee unit, with small packets of formula that you can pop in and brew. 

The machine is designed to make a bottle of formula in one minute, offering fluid-temperature controls, a water filter and a smartphone app. The machine connects with the app via WiFi to track feedings as well as record important nutritional information and other items concerning the baby's health. Gerber offers specific formula packets designed for babies ages 1 month to 36 months.

While BabyNes is a few years old, this is the first version to connect to the Internet and offer souped-up features like the app that don't come cheaply. Nestlé-owned Gerber has to convince new parents they need it badly enough to fork over the $249 machine cost. 

"Our challenge is giving this revolutionary technology system a human benefit," said Florian Jacquier, Gerber's marketing and digital manager. 

Jacquier's initiative is dubbed "Smart Enough for the Next Generation" and was created by Terri and Sandy, an independent agency in New York. The campaign will push BabyNes with display and video ads on Facebook, YouTube, Instagram, BabyCenter, Amazon and numerous mom blogs.

For video, the brand has tapped Bobbie Thomas, style editor for NBC's Today Show, as a spokesperson to talk about her experience with the product, which helped her through breastfeeding struggles as a new mom. There will be a total of four clips in the empathetic series that consists of a 60-second spot, a pair of 30-second clips and one 15-second video. 

"We wanted to showcase how BabyNes fits into Bobbie Thomas' life and tell the story in a highly emotional way," Jacquier explained.   

Check out the product's video below: