By: Nick Stirsman

Last night during Superbowl 50 Mountain Dew aired a commercial titled, “Mtn Dew Kickstart: Puppymonkeybaby” that was quite different from what we are accustomed to seeing when it comes to Superbowl spots. The campaign is for their new beverage Kickstart and features their new mascot, puppy monkey baby, a hybrid creature that was most likely cooked up by a mad scientist. You could try and forget what the puppy monkey baby looks like, but you will never be able to forget the song he was singing (or chanting).

The goal of this campaign is to market a new drink from Mountain Dew called Kickstart. The idea to use puppy monkey baby in the commercial makes a little more sense when you break down the product and who is being targeted. The new drink is comprised of three major ingredients: Mountain Dew, caffeine, and juice. Three popular ingredients make up the new beverage so Mountain Dew decided to go slightly mental and have the mascot for the drink literally be a combination of three very popular things.

puppy-monkey-baby-sb-hed-2016

This was Mountain Dew’s first ad in 15 years and it definitely divided the audience. The campaign originally launched a teaser video at the end of January. Despite the obvious love/hate relationship viewers have, I believe that this was a social win and one of the more successful ads aired in recent Superbowl history.  Since the campaign launched, the commercial has racked up 11 million views and over 50 thousand tweets.  It’s safe to say that this spot has people talking about Mountain Dew more than ever, whether it was positive or negative. This campaign is definitely riskier than your normal Budweiser Clydesdale commercial, but the risk is paying off because everyone is talking about #Puppymonkeybaby and Mountain Dew.

Mountain Dew drinks are known for being highly caffeinated which draws in a specific consumer base. One example of a larger community with close ties to Mountain Dew is the gaming community. Now Mountain Dew’s decision to go in a new direction with their campaign doesn’t seem so strange when you account for who they were trying to appeal to.

Mountain Dew has succeeded at drawing in many people with the #Puppymonkeybaby movement. People on social media are talking about Mountain Dew their new mascot, but not so much campaign puppy monkey baby is the face of. I think that the shock value of the puppy monkey baby may have distracted the audience from the message about Mountain Dew’s new drink Kickstart and because of it most attention is focused on Mountain Dew and not specifically Kickstart. This isn’t a huge issue, it just means that most people won’t go and directly search for Kickstart. They are more likely to search for #Puppymonkeybaby or Mountain Dew where they will then be directed to  Kickstart.

In the end I think it is safe to say that Mountain Dew’s campaign is going swimmingly and are happy with the successful launch of the Kickstart campaign and puppy monkey baby’s reception.

References:

Frank, V. (2016, February 8). The best and worst commercials from Super Bowl 50. Retrieved February 8, 2016, from http://www.msn.com/en-us/sports/nfl/the-best-and-worst-commercials-from-super-bowl-50/ar-BBpenEF?li=BBnb7Kz&ocid=SL5LDHP#page=3

Johnson, L. (2016, February 7). Really Resonated. Retrieved February 8, 2016, from http://www.adweek.com/news/technology/6-big-stats-show-what-super-bowl-ads-resonated-people-169501

Mooney, P. (2016, February 7). ‘Puppy-Monkey-Baby’ Superbowl 50 gets 7 million Youtube views. Retrieved February 8, 2016, from http://www.inquisitr.com/2776439/puppy-monkey-baby-super-bowl-50-mountain-dew-commercial-gets-7-million-youtube-views-video/

O’Reilly, L. (2016, February 7). Mountain Dew’s weird ‘Puppy Monkey Baby’ Super Bowl ad completely split viewers’ opinions. Retrieved February 8, 2016, from http://www.businessinsider.com/mountain-dews-weird-puppy-monkey-baby-super-bowl-ad-completely-split-viewers-opinions-2016-2

Shapiro, E. (2016, February 7). Super Bowl 50 Ad: With Mountain Dew, a Puppy, Monkey and Baby Collide. Retrieved February 8, 2016, from http://abcnews.go.com/Sports/super-bowl-50-mountain-dew-puppy-monkey-baby/story?id=36778039