How do you convince dairy milk lovers to drink plant-milk? This was our challenge with Oatly, the Swedish challenger brand as it entered the Hong Kong market. Oatly believes that shifting from dairy to a plant-based diet is better for our bodies and the planet, but in Hong Kong, despite 90% of the native population being lactose intolerant, dairy consumption has been increasing.
- Generate awareness of plant-based milk among Hong Kong mass population
- Drive sales of Oatly
STRATEGY AND EXECUTION
New research highlighted a very strong association between milk and cows in Hong Kong. We also found very low awareness and understanding of plant-based milk.
We wanted to break this association with cows and get people to talk about alternatives. In a focus group we identified another problem: there wasn’t a Chinese word for plant-based milk.
This insight was key to our creative idea: how could Hongkongers discuss alternatives to dairy when there was no word for plant-based milk in their local language, or buy a product when there was no word for the category?
Our idea was to create a new Chinese word for plant-based milk, adding a new word to the 2000-year ancient language.
The newly created Chinese word combines the element of ‘plant’ onto the Chinese character for ‘milk’, highlighting the feature of plant-based milk—coming from a plant.
WE LED AN INTEGRATED CAMPAIGN BY:
- Launching the new word to media by spotlighting the lack of understanding of the benefits of plant-based milk, along with an urgent call to action to Hong Kong government to define the category.
- Utilizing social media and targeted advertising helped to build momentum, including a placement in Hong Kong’s busiest metro station. With a minimal budget for media, the strategy was to earn attention rather than drive reach.
- Engaging with micro-influencers and NGOs and took the new word to events where the public could sample Oatly and join in the debate.
- Enlisting retailers to use the new word at point of sale, helping consumers identify the category and Oatly itself.
Oatly controlled the narrative around plant-based milk and led the debate for change with a new word that piqued public interest.
OUR EFFORTS TO DRIVE AWARENESS OF PLANT-BASED MILK RESULTED IN:
- 500+ media articles, 100 percent positive tone with 136 million impressions across mainland China, Taiwan, US, Europe and Africa
- A 100 percent increase in social media conversation for Oatly in the two-week period following the launch
- Environmental groups and NGOs e advocating for the new word campaign
OUR EFFORTS TO DRIVE SALES OF OATLY RESULTED IN:
- Major retailers such as Wellcome, ParknShop and 7-11 using the new word at point of sale
- Significant increase in month-on-month sales across all sales channels
- The sales impact has allowed Oatly to expand into new APAC markets