The last 12 months have seen their fair share of social media campaigns for fast moving consumer goods (FMCG) brands. In Australia, we can remember the Pepsi ‘Refresh project’ and Crust Pizza’s #CrustFreePizzaFriday Twitter campaign among others.

Chewing gum is not typically what I would call the ‘hip’ thing in consumer land so launching a new gum would probably be quite challenging. However one company has managed to cut through the clutter successfully.

Wrigley launched in Australia its ‘5’ gum in mid 2009. According to a Wrigley ad featured in Convenience World (February/March 2010 issue), the company claims it to be ‘the most successful gum launch in 2009’ with the gum delivering $8.7 million in sales since the launch. It became the #2 brand in the gum category after just 11 weeks in the market.

This is what, in my humble opinion, made this launch so successful: 

  • The gum’s packaging is black (with a vibrant colour on the side for each flavour). This packaging really stuck in my head as it was the first black packaging for chewing gum I had seen. A few months later, Mentos launched it’s Aqua Kiss gum – with black packaging as well – and a small presence on Facebook (312 fans at time of writing)
  • Wrigley used a good marketing mix including advertising (see YouTube clip below), sampling, in-store point-of-sales and an online campaign called ‘5 Feed’



  •  The online campaign is different and targeted. 5 Feed is based on sensorial experiment, i.e. artists, musicians and designers are invited to remix artworks and videos and submit them to the website. It also has a presence on social media with a YouTube channel, 16,393 Facebook fans and 157 Twitter followers at time of writing.

It seems to me that when it comes to FMCG, it is really important for brands to stand out from the crowd. Social media, if used well, can be a very effective means of doing so. Here are three simple (and simplified) golden rules for FMCG when engaging with social media:

  • Be different
  • Stimulate conversations and sharing of information
  • Mix it up: Facebook, Twitter, Flickr, YouTube… use them all!

 Have you noticed other FMCG brands engaging on social media in Australia recently? I’d like to hear about other good as well as unsuccessful social media campaigns you have come across.