A lot of brands don't seem to know what to do on Facebook. Some post insipid updates like, "What's everyone doing this weekend?" Some just post boring press releases. But now, Kimberly-Clark's Scott brand has offered something useful: an app for industrial-strength Scott Shop Towels that you can use to tell your whining friends to shut up. The "Suck it Up" app, created by Colossal Squid Industries, went live today. Share it with the complainers on your Facebook feed.
Just when you thought iPhone app developers had seized every thinkable opportunity out there, along comes this one: Now, you can potty-train your kid using a free mobile app from Kimberly-Clark. The maker of Huggies diapers and Pull-Ups training pants is introducing a new app, iGo Potty, this week that does just well, exactly that. It encourages both parents and kids alike to participate in the potty-training process (and hopefully make it fun along the way) with interactive features like customizable potty reminders, prizes and games and even special calls from "Patty the Potty." (Yes, the toilet is calling. Make sure you get your toddler to answer it.) What's more, upon successful completion of this important life stage, the app lets out a stream of graduation-themed music, as well as (virtual) balloons and streamers. There's even a diploma you can print out and hang on the fridge. Mobile marketing agency Joule created the app. We can't wait to try it ourselves. Does it work on a dog?
Talk about obsessive-compulsive behaviors. Kimberly-Clark is running new creative showing why its Viva paper towels are better than the "leading quilted paper towel" (i.e., Procter & Gamble's Bounty). The spot here, from agency Tris3ct, opens with a Viva crew charging into a woman's house with a larger-than-life size Viva battering ram. Inside, Sandy, a woman who's written a book called One Step to Breaking the Quilted Habit, tells the housewife why she should no longer buy quilted towels. " 'Quilted' is towelspeak for 'air,' but Viva puts 35 percent more towels between you and the mess," the lady says, hoping to convince the woman to switch over. With her team of brand enthusiasts watching, the author has the woman try cleaning a spill using Viva. Once she breaks the habit, the rest is easy. "Beautiful," the onlookers say as she breathes a sigh of accomplishment (and relief). "Try Viva and quit the quilt," the voiceover at the end says. (Will Bounty take the bait and fight back?)
Sales of Scott toilet tissue have lagged due to the economic slump and subsequent lack of Rocky Horror Picture Show midnight screenings. So, the Kimberly-Clark brand is attempting to recover with its new "Do You Know Scott?" campaign. It features an interactive Web site and commercials like the one shown here (via agency Tris3ct) to make eponymous spokesman Scott explain how the brand is greener, cheaper and better than ever. Or not explain, since Scott speaks primarily in buzzwords and smiles in a way that can only be described as "punchable." The TV spots might help brand visibility, but the site doesn't cover any new ground, and honestly, toilet paper is never going to have enough of a cool factor to build a non-spambot online community around. If K-C wants to boost the brand's sales above private label and appeal to the greener consumer, it needs to make the relevant information clearer and less Web-2.0 gimmicky. Or failing that, they should make a flash game where we can punch Scott.
In January, Kimberly-Clark's Cottonelle launched a contest asking consumers whether toilet paper should roll over or under. Well, the debate was settled by Oscar time, with people in the national poll choosing "over." Now, the brand is back with the next step in the campaign to keep the conversation going. It's promising a "recall" of any bath tissue that doesn't roll over. The campaign, created by JWT London (but running in the U.S. and Canada), includes TV and outdoor ads that show the company "recalling any toilet paper which doesn't roll over." Cottonelle brand manager John Stanwood says: "We wanted to counter the theory that all toilet paper is the same and come up with an idea that was eye-catching, compelling and light-hearted." This, of course, doesn't mean that retailers are pulling any TP that mysteriously rolls "under" from their shelves. That would be silly.
Kimberly-Clark has so much confidence in its Kotex brand that it's asking consumers to "Take the Panty Challenge." The point is, Kotex's Ultra Thin with CleanSorb pads "break down heavy flow" so fast that you don't need to worry about "leaks [that] might crash the party." The personal-care products maker has launched an online campaign that lets women record the brand's effectiveness during their monthly cycle. For the dissatisfied, K-C is offering a rebate of $4 for the purchase of new panties. (You can even win a $100 panty shopping spree and take a quiz to see what kind of panty wearer you are.) An ad in this month's Redbook magazine proclaims, "Join the undie ground party." (We just did.) "Protection and comfort. Now that's worth celebrating!" (You got that right.)
Eek! BrandFreak woke up this morning to find that Zooey (yes, that unpotty-trained dog again) had peed all over the place. We're so frustrated that we've decided to try (yes, we're desperate) Kimberly-Clark's tried-and-true potty dance. We wrote about the potty dance last year. Now, JWT New York has refreshed the campaign for K-C's Pull-Ups brand with TV, print, online and in-store ads and even house parties where moms and kids (that's right) do the potty dance. (It's kind of like the chicken dance, except you do it when you gotta go, you know?) Pull-Ups tapped children's songwriter Ralph Covert as the face of the campaign, and he's also encouraging families to drop off unused diapers at local women's and children's centers. We went online to Pull-Ups.com to try to learn the dance ourselves, and hey, we've almost got it. Do we "feel the rhythm"? We do! Oh no, the pooch just went on the couch! (We'll be back.)
BrandFreak should not have gotten a dog. Not only is the creature not potty trained, but it's hyper active and keeps us up all night! Thank goodness for Kimberly-Clark's GoodNites bedtime stories. (OK, they're meant for toddlers, but so what?) The maker of Huggies and Kleenex has launched "a series of 20, five-minute audio bedtime stories that will fill each night with a new, fantastical adventure," thus making bedtime less stressful for bedwetting kids and their parents. For instance, there's the story of Iggy, a boy who "embarks on wild adventures with his Wiggy Bed, building self-confidence along the way." Parents can download the series for free at BedtimeTheater.com. The brand is also running a contest to pick the best consumer-generated Iggy story. (The winning pick will be recorded in a video segment.) No, it's not recommended for dogs, but Zooey, our puppy, did go to sleep listening to it. Might just put a diaper on that dog next.
We've all had arguments like this before: Should the toilet paper roll over or under? BrandFreak is a fan of the former, though Kimberly-Clark, one of the nation's largest TP makers, is helping Americans to decide once and for all. (Thank goodness!) K-C, which makes the Scott and Cottonelle brands, has launched a contest that encourages consumers to vote for "under" or "over" at CottonelleRollPoll.com. Tori Spelling and Dean McDermott are leading the charge. (Tori is "a firm believer in rolling over," while Dean is "an under kind of guy," according to K-C). You have till March 6 to vote, though we have some stats in the meantime (courtesy of K-C) that might surprise you. 1) Of 1,000 adults surveyed, one in five get annoyed when the TP is hanging the wrong way; 2) Men are more likely to notice and be pissed off (if it's not to their preferences, that is); 3) one in five admit to flipping the toilet paper if it's not to their liking, even in someone else's home. Another interesting tidbit: "Overs" are usually overachievers and super-organized; "unders" are laid-back. Those who don't care tend to "minimize conflict" and "value flexibility." OK, yes, we're in the overachiever group.
Sorry, Peggy, but I have another mother now, and her name is Jessica. She's more of a BFF, really, and I don't even know if she can cook, but she sure can dish. She might not cure me of this evil cold with chicken soup and cherry Jell-O (Peggy specialties), but she can distract me from my misery with gossip and a mani-pedi. This scenario brought to you by Kleenex, which recently launched a promotion called Get Mommed that sounded so intriguing, I tossed aside my long-suffering mother for a virtual one. (That'll be our secret, OK?) The idea behind the campaign is that we could all use a little extra mothering during cold and flu season, and of course, we'd look online for that kind of comfort. (It's wish fulfillment for anyone who's ever wanted to switch moms after getting dirt rubbed off their faces with a spit-soaked hankie). I picked my new mom from a stable of stereotypes, and I now await her barrage of digital advice and/or pats on the head while I convalesce. Note to Kimberly-Clark: This site needs work, big time. And note to Jessica: Empathy's welcome, but if you try to make me clean my room, I'm out!