Product / ServiceDOLE BANANA
CategoryA06. Use of Social in a Direct Campaign
EntrantDENTSU Y&R Tokyo, JAPAN
Entrant Company DENTSU Y&R Tokyo, JAPAN
Advertising Agency DENTSU Y&R Tokyo, JAPAN


Name Company Position
Yuki Fuse Dentsu Young/Rubicam Inc. Chief Producer/Planning Director
Shoichi Yamakawa Dentsu Young/Rubicam Inc. Account Director
Naoko Gotoh Dentsu Young/Rubicam Inc. Account Director
Ryusei Yoshimoto Dentsu Young/Rubicam Inc. Account Planner
George So Sugitomo DENTSU INC. Creative Director/Planner
Naoki Mori DENTSU INC. Agency Producer
Naru Kudo DENTSU TEC INC. Agency Producer/Director
Mai Shibatani DENTSU INC. Art Director
Nao Otani DENTSU INC. Copywriter
Noriko Osumi DENTSU INC. Planner/Copywriter
Yoshiaki Shiota DENTSU INC. Producer
Takashi Okada East Crew Inc. Event Director
Takeshi Kobayashi/Ayaka Yamaguchi Dentsu Event Operations Inc. Event Director
Hajime Kuwashima Iret Inc. Technical Director
Eriko Shioya/Masaru Nishioka DENTSU TEC INC. Designer/Assistant Director
Jun Kawashima/Kent Mori Puzzle Inc. Web Director/Web Designer
Ryuichi Hasegawa/Takamichi Saito/Wataru Abe Puzzle Inc. Editor/Assistant Director/Markup Engineer
Kenji Muramatsu/Shoichi Suwa/Ken Nobuhara/Masashi Tomihara TAIYO KIKAKU Co./Ltd. Producer
Takeshi Izumida/Junichi Kato TAIYO KIKAKU Co./Ltd. Director/Cinematographer
Saori Kiryu/Kana Okui/Nozomi Yokoyama Platinum Inc. Pr Planner

The Brief

Japan’s largest marathon race is TOKYO MARATHON 2014 with over 36,000 runners. Dole sponsored this race, but wanted to be remembered as not just a plain fruit. Dole’s banana is extra sweet, delicious and most importantly the best nutritious energy supply for all marathoners. Dole wanted to brand the banana, the ultimate of all bananas. The target was drawn from new customers. And the strategy was to create an ultimate Dole banana no one will forget.

Creative Execution

To directly print a personal message with the participants’ name and information on a banana was news by itself. To do it in real-time on the spot was even bigger news, especially for a marathoner who had just finished a 42.195km run exhausted. We knew that we had grasped the hearts of the runners when all of the runners couldn’t and didn’t want to eat the “BANANA TROPHY” because it was too precious and memorable to. The banana is a commodity fruit, so creating a special experience around the Dole banana was necessary, and that is what we did.

Describe the creative solution to the brief/objective.

BANANA TROPHY A memorable trophy made from a Dole banana, that the runner would be sure to love and share onto their SNS. When the runner crossed the finish line, the official RFID on the marathoners shoe triggered and automatically sent a “JUST FINISHED TOKYO MARATHON 2014!” post onto the runners’ facebook. The runners’ friends congratulated their finish and the feedback was collected through the web, which automatically transformed into the “BANANA TROPHY” in real-time. The trophy had the marathoners’ name, finish time and cheers from facebook printed directly onto the Dole banana, by linking the web to a special printer.


Buzz like “The banana too precious to eat!” swept the web and was shared 720,000 times. The “BANANA TROPHY” was broadcasted even on the national news. Media cost was zero, but the total coverage was worth over 1,100,000 USD. The news reached more than 28,000,000 people grasping the hearts of all runners and more. A national market survey showed that, 95.3% changed their impression of Dole to extremely good 83.5% strongly considered buying “Dole’s banana” Sales went up 115% the next month onwards, and Dole became the most unforgettable banana not only to the runners, but to the whole nation.