Are Skittles Cool?

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Was looking at the new Skittles’ new web site and was at first impressed with their mash-up of social media sites.  However, something about the campaign just feels a little off.  Michelle Greer has a great summary over on Michelle’s Greer’s blog of what may be wrong:

IT’S FREAKING CANDY. Unless it’s Pop Rocks and is killing kids or something, no one is going to talk about it. The novelty of your site will wear off quickly and your designers will be laughing all the way to the bank. Candy is not a social object that gets the blogosphere talking.

My assumption here is that they are hoping that Millennials will “Interweb the Rainbow” and decided that Skittles are pretty cool and should be purchased in large quantities.  I don’t think the idea is horrible (Skittles now has over 600,000 friends on Facebook), it just seems like a stretch.

It will be interesting to see, as more marketeers experiment with social media, what ideas work.  That being said, I can guarantee that the ones that have the biggest impact will not be trying to borrow some coolness for a splash on the front page of Business Week.

Piet Levy captures this challenge in his recent article, “The Quest For Cool”:

But don’t try too hard to “be cool” when courting
tweens, teens and early twenty-somethings. If
the message seems forced, if the kids get a whif of
desperation or phoniness, they’ll treat your “cool”
campaign with some very cold shoulders.
and are aware of the power of their own voices.

So, what do you think?  Are Skittles cool now?

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