Which made Pandora a logical place to reach out to millennials. What was less obvious was how to move consumers from engaging with a piece of content at the top of the funnel to actually buying something off the Taco Bell breakfast menu.
“At the end of the day, we’re responsible for driving traffic into the store and showing the brand exactly how their marketing is driving that,” said Heidi Browning, Pandora’s SVP of strategic solutions.
The overarching campaign concept, “Breakfast Defectors,” was developed by Taco Bell’s lead creative and digital agency, Deutsch LA, with spots that exhorted consumers to chuck their tired old breakfast routine and try something new.
The media mix around Breakfast Defectors was strategic and dayparted for the morning rush. First, Pandora targeted millennial listeners with a high-impact welcome mobile interstitial. Following that, it interspersed mobile audio, video and display ads throughout their listening experience.
The purpose of the audio ad was to grab attention with the offer of a free sausage biscuit taco redeemable at the nearest Taco Bell location. Video and display acted as pinch hitters to keep the Taco Bell breakfast menu top of mind.
The campaign also awarded members of the target audience with an hour of uninterrupted listening as thanks for engaging with Taco Bell content through Pandora’s Sponsored Listening native ad product, which launched in July.
It was the value exchange Taco Bell was looking for, Browning said.
“Taco Bell could fulfill their mission of raising awareness, and millennials could get something in return,” she said. “Millennial audiences covet value, it’s how you win their attention.”
A brand study conducted by Millward Brown Digital on behalf of Pandora during the campaign found a 26% boost in awareness of Taco Bell’s biscuit taco among those who were exposed to the Breakfast Defector messaging. Millward Brown also found a 28% uptick in message association against the campaign tagline – “The Next Generation of Breakfast” – and a 16% lift in product association in answer the question, “Which QSR offers the biscuit taco?” (Answer: Taco Bell, of course.)
But the proof was in the breakfast pudding in terms of offline activity, said Corsinita. Generating consideration, trial and purchase is one thing. Breaking someone’s entrenched morning routine and getting that person to come back multiple times is another.
A follow-up study with location analytics company Placed tied media placements on Pandora back to in-store visits. Placed determined that one in seven exposed listeners returned to a Taco Bell store within a 10-day period. The exposed group was also 15% more likely to visit a Taco Bell location than people in the control group.
The shorter purchase cycle was and is critical, Corsinita said.
“Breakfast isn’t necessarily something someone thinks about weeks or months in advance, but it’s a decision that we make every single day,” she said. “And that frequency of behavior is just as important to us at the top-of-funnel stuff – you just can’t have one without the other.”
In addition to Pandora, the Breakfast Defector campaign drove awareness on terrestrial radio, social and what Corsinita called “the big twin engines of TV and digital.” With help from DigitasLBi, Taco Bell rounded out the strategy with targeted messaging on Instagram, news apps and navigation app Waze, which would display branded pins to drivers when they were stopped at traffic lights.
Breaking into a new category takes continuity, Corsinita said, who noted that Taco Bell plans to continue working with Pandora in 2016.
“Breakfast was a big launch for us,” she said, “but we’re keenly aware of the fact that we you have to continue to build that routine.”