Marketing 50

Yoplait Whips!

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Feather beds, bubble baths and fuzzy pink slippers aren't the hallmarks of traditional yogurt marketing. But Yoplait was out to evoke one major message with its new Whips! line: fluff.

In January 2002, the division of General Mills launched its first new cup product since 1989, with an aerated formula that combines the healthful attributes of yogurt with the indulgent texture of mousse.

"We were looking to drive the taste experience in innovative ways," says Doug Pritchard, the 37-year-old marketing manager for all of Yoplait's adult cup products. "Certainly, Whips! is able to take it into a slightly different occasion, as more of a treat."

Ad efforts focus on conveying the texture of the product by connecting to other light and fluffy experiences. Publicis Groupe's Saatchi & Saatchi, New York, broke a campaign last July that shows women enjoying things such as feather beds, bubble baths and fuzzy pink slippers. The catchphrase: "Everybody needs something fluffy to love."

In less than two years, Whips! has exceeded projections, racking up $64 million in sales in its first eight months and upwards of $83 million since Mr. Pritchard took over last October, according to Information Resources Inc. It has helped propel Yoplait to the No. 1 spot in the $2.7 billion U.S. yogurt market, with 35.4% market share as of Sept. 7.

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