Chips Ahoy Rethinks Content, Revamps Media Strategy Centered on Real-Life Experiences

Chips Ahoy, in a media strategy overhaul, is shifting television to digital to better target Gen Z consumers. It’s focused on developing content appropriate for different digital platforms like TikTok, Twitter, and Instagram.

Natalie Gadbois, senior brand manager at Chips Ahoy, said their decision was data-driven and ushered in by cord-cutting trends and lagging linear TV viewership. “If we really wanted to build brand love, we needed to do that with the younger cohort. And the data indicated that they weren’t watching traditional TV anymore.” She believes a digital-first media strategy is more flexible in terms of media buying, given linear TV ad contract terms, and content creation, given TikTok’s format.

Homemade Chips Ahoy! Cookies Recipe (How to Make Chips Ahoy! Cookies)

Chips Ahoy is also investing in experiences as the majority of consumers. It announced various activations in celebration of its 60th birthday – including the chance to attend a Chips Ahoy-themed yacht party. Tanya Berman, senior vice president of the biscuit category at Chips Ahoy, said the brand has really re-engaged that cohort of the Gen Z consumer. “Part of that thanks to Chip. He really is that embodiment of happy-go-lucky fun, and part of it is because of how and where we show up.”

Chip, the brand’s spokescharacter, has been appearing repeatedly in recent marketing efforts. “When you think about where that cohort is, they’re not watching TV. They’re on YouTube and TikTok, and Chip fits in there naturally to do a lot of things that are organic and authentic,” Berman explained. “It’s really about showing up authentically in a fun and interesting way in a manner that speaks to them.”

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Chips Ahoy is making sure that the placements make sense for the consumers and the platform alike. Recently, the brand collaborated with Twitch during an NCAA promotion and animated Chip, shot baskets on TikTok. Berman said Chips Ahoy has evolved its content to meet the taste and demand of its young consumers, with shorter formats, more engagement, and being in the right places at the right time.

The cookie brand also acknowledged the fact that Gen Z consumers are bombarded all the time and they’re online all the time. “But they are also hungry for experiential moments where they can step out of being online,” Berman said. “I’m not saying that they’re not connected, the phone is still next to them, they haven’t powered down – but it’s a moment of reset.”

For Gen Z, at the end of the day, an experience is an experience. They live it and post it.

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