Jenny Chan 陳詠欣
Nov 5, 2014

Clever or nuts? Animating walnuts for Chinese consumption

SHANGHAI - The interior of a walnut resembles a brain, and this campaign mirrors just that—how eating walnuts will make you brainy. But we still can't get our head around how the campaign approach shifts the category norm.

Client: California Walnut Commission

Agency: Grey

Market: China

Scope: Youku, online banner ads, social seeding on Weibo and WeChat, trade shows

Background: Wallie is the cartoon ambassador for the California Walnut Commission’s new campaign, launched on 1 November. It has been designed to provide consumers with inspiration on using walnuts in everyday cooking, rather than just during Chinese festive periods. China is the Commission’s key export market. The campaign is also timed with the harvest period of Californian walnuts, which is between November and the first quarter of next year.

It is targeted at female consumers, particularly those married with kids and young professional women. Wallie is positioned as a smart, clever and active kid, or even potential boyfriend material. He shares tips and tricks on everyday life, covering all sorts of topics from beauty to food.

Press release quote: Michelle McNeill, international senior marketing director, California Walnut Board and Commission: "There are lots of choices in the nuts market in China, and the consumption rate for Californian walnuts is stable, but not growing. We needed to find a way to cut through and change this."

Campaign's comments: The campaign purports to crack an emotional connection with Chinese consumers with new cartoon ambassador Wallie, since functional benefits are the order of the day when it comes to advertising nuts in China. But we still do not see Wallie moving beyond the conventions of the category, as both the launch video and main creative assets still focus on how walnuts are good for brains. Maybe we aren't eating enough walnuts to grasp the true significance?



Client: California Walnut Commission
Creative agency: Grey Group Shanghai
Chief creative officer: Canon Wu
Creative director: Jonathan Lim
Copywriter: Top Yu
Art director: Yuki Xu, Sasa Yu
Digital planning director: Tina Shieh
Digital business director: Joseph Tsang
Account service: Bobby Kwan, Cici Ao

Media agency: MediaCom
PR agency: Weber Shandwick
Trade partner: Lees Marketing

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