While certain home consumer goods (toilet paper, hand sanitizers, wipes, etc.) surged during the pandemic, others took a hit as daily needs for many changed significantly during lockdowns. Last April, as COVID-19 was ramping up, Hershey’s, which owns Ice Breakers, Breath Savers, and Bubble Yum, said that its mint and gum sales had plummeted 50% with people social distancing. Privately held firm Mars, which owns Extra Gum, hasn’t disclosed its sales, but its newest ad campaign puts a lighthearted twist on why people will need their product as life returns to normal.
The longform ad (over two and a half minutes) portrays people in society all coming out of quarantine at once. As Céline Dion’s power ballad “It’s All Coming Back to Me Now” plays throughout, beards get shaved, Zoom calls are ended, and lots of people have make out sessions. The latter, of course, is a great reason to keep breath freshening gum on hand. Mars intends to run the spot at different lengths on television, digital, and social channels.
With offices, schools, live events and more places opening as vaccines become more widely distributed, it’s likely that sales of mints and gum will pick up. In fact, according to Interpret’s New Media Measure®, Extra Gum saw a dip in purchase incidence of three percentage points in the US at the start of the coronavirus outbreak but has already regained some momentum and is approaching pre-pandemic levels.
“After more than a year of social isolation, anxiety, and tragedy, Extra’s newest campaign perfectly captures the exuberance we’re all feeling as things begin to return to normal. Smart marketing ties into the cultural zeitgeist, and the creative team struck just the right balance in this spot,” commented Janine Cannella, VP of Marketing at Interpret.