CategoryA01. Fast Moving Consumer Goods
EntrantPHD Sydney, AUSTRALIA
Idea Creation PHD Sydney, AUSTRALIA
Media Placement PHD Sydney, AUSTRALIA


Name Company Position
Alexandra Sherbon Bastion Banjo Account Director

Why is this work relevant for Media?

The agency were responsible for the creation of the media idea, the planning and the buying for the campaign. Ben & Jerry's tendered the creative work to agencies that were specifically tasked with coming up with art direction based on our idea.


The ice cream category is one where flavour innovation is a major driver of purchase and consumption, but when it comes to flavour, Ben & Jerry’s biggest strength is that people love one flavour above all others… Cookie Dough. Flavours that contain cookie dough make up 52% of our total sales. Now that's doughlicious! But, it's a strength that could be a weakness where flavour innovation is so important in the category. So our objective was as single minded as it was challenging; to drive a +17% increase in penetration of Ben & Jerrys Cookie Dough Range. The brand had never achieved such growth and the ice cream category was massively contracting...

Describe the creative idea / insights (30% of vote)

So, flavour is flavour right? Not for Ben & Jerry’s. We’re about more than that, and customers expect more from us too. Which is why we’ve lived it for years through our brand value – “if it’s not fun why do it?”. Unfortunately, our competitors don’t believe in fun, and have poisoned the well for us. 57% of our Gen Y/Z audiences couldn’t recall a single ad they felt positively about! Tragic, but there was a glimmer of hope as the same audience gave us the solution. 60% of Gen Y/Z stated they felt more positively towards ads that were funny or humorous! Our brand values & marketing behaviour provided a perfect platform for us to lead the way. So we decided to let the rest of the category get all serious about organic sea-salt and Guatemalan caramel or whatever. We would focus on why people loved us; cookie dough!

Describe the strategy (20% of vote)

So just be funny… simple enough? Funny how? And with what? With no creative agency and no assets, it was down to The Agency Never ones to shirk a challenge, we become researchers into what was funny to our audience. It is a strange world of UGC out there, awash with Insta posts, YouTube unboxings, TikToks and memes for days. But at almost every turn, a common humorous device was present… The almighty PUN: our audience loves ‘em! Once we uncovered this truth the strategy revealed itself… “If it’s not fun why do it“ became “if it’s not PUN why do it”, or should we say, “why DOUGH it?” …yeah, we went there. By creating our own puns, we would deliver the Cookie Dough love in funny ways. We would inject DOUGH based puns into audience’s lives across all relevant environments and doughliver dynamic punny ads to our Cookie Dough fans!

Describe the execution (20% of vote)

We created three levels of targeting to contextualise our punny ads. Broad puns - “You'll never know if you never dough” Contextual puns - “Working from home? Dough worries” Product puns - “Vegan? Dough it without dairy” For that ice cream "couch" moment, Television was also a must. In the top rating programmes, we delivered contextual puns. Like in the finale of the "Masked Singer" where we ran, “Uncover something doughlicious” We also leveraged YouTube Director Mix, serving personalised puns in real-time. The best performers we put on Facebook and the ‘gram. These were product specific because we knew this crowd shared tasty punny content. Ben and Jerry’s buses kept the message relevant… “Doughn’t lick this bus” or “Dough the extra mile”. And finally, to seal the deal, we used Retail Outdoor targeting the vital last 30 metres before purchase… "for a snack, they’re a dough brainer" Yeah, we doughlivered!

List the results (30% of vote)

So the question remained who doesn’t like a good pun?…turns out no one! Against our goal of 17% increase in penetration, we were delighted to hear that we absolutely smashed the target! Our campaign drove a +49% increase in penetration of the Ben and Jerry’s Cookie Dough range! In addition, we've seen record growth in 2020... and we're still growing. This was a doughlicous result knowing the category had only grown by 1%! The result was never in Dought! :)