SOURCE: McKinney

September 04, 2013 11:26 ET

Mentos Rolls With McKinney

New Partnership and New Brand Campaign Herald Mentos' Return to U.S. TV

NEW YORK, NY--(Marketwired - September 04, 2013) - McKinney and Mentos, one of the most recognized and beloved confectionaries in the world, are launching a partnership and campaign that represent a significant shift for the brand as it seeks to generate further category growth in the U.S. market.

McKinney has been tapped as brand advertising agency by Maurice Herrera, VP/ Head of Marketing for Mentos and its parent company, Perfetti Van Melle. Herrera first joined the confectionery company in 2012 from Kraft (via Cadbury), where as senior marketing director he led that company's $800 million gum portfolio, including Trident, Dentyne, Stride, Bubblicious, Chiclets and Clorets. He now leads marketing efforts for Perfetti Van Melle across mints, gum and candy with its iconic confectionary brands Mentos and Airheads.

"Great brand building efforts authentically integrate the brand into a belief that is cherished by consumers," said Herrera. "That's exactly what McKinney's collaborative approach helped us identify with the 'Roll with It' spot."

"People know Mentos and react very positively to the brand, but there are many consumers who haven't had a Mentos in a while. We plan to change that!" said Alex Van Gestel, managing director of McKinney in New York. "Our job is clear: Make Mentos one of the most talked-about brands in the U.S. and turn that conversation into consumption." 

Launching September 2, an initial "Roll with It" spot will air on national cable outlets Adult Swim, USA Network, Nick at Night, VH1, MTV, Comedy Central, FX and BET, among others. The spot chronicles a young skateboarder's journey along a beach boardwalk as he enjoys chewing Mentos. As he skates, he experiences some surprises and potential mishaps, but his quick thinking makes it all good.

"Millennials have an incredibly positive and adaptable mindset," said Peter Nicholson, executive creative director of McKinney in New York. "The universal symbol for staying positive happens to be the same motion you make when you pop a Mentos out of the iconic rolls package. Consumers can also equate the friendly, laid-back vibe of a beach with the fun and pleasure of experiencing Mentos."

Beyond a communications challenge, Mentos has also embarked on a product challenge. While the brand is delighting consumers with its core chewy mints and a line of chewing gum, it is also launching a new-to-the-world breath mint.

"Mentos has strong taste equity, and we wanted to leverage that equity in the mint category, a category where breath-freshening efficacy comes at the expense of taste," said Craig Cuchra, senior brand manager of Mentos. "In the case of our new mints, they definitely freshen breath, but the look and delightful taste are nothing like what consumers have come to expect of breath mints."

Cuchra added that this unique position led to Mentos' campaign idea of the "the precious jewel of breath mints," which is being communicated across print, social media and in-store touch points. "The jewel-like appearance is inspiring breakthrough creative across print, Mentos' social media, including Facebook, Twitter and YouTube, and in-store," he said.

Mentos has engaged Mongo Industries, R/GA and TracyLocke to make this an integrated and highly effective effort for the brand.

About Perfetti Van Melle

Perfetti Van Melle is a privately owned global company that was established in March 2001 through the merger of Perfetti SpA and Van Melle N.V. In July 2006 Perfetti Van Melle made another important acquisition, acquiring 100% of Chupa Chups, a family owned Spanish Group famous all over the world for its well-loved Chupa Chups and Smint brands. Perfetti Van Melle manufactures and distributes sugar confectionery and chewing gum products in over 150 countries. Today Perfetti Van Melle is one of the world's largest confectionery Groups, marketing highly renowned brands like Mentos, Frisk, Chupa Chups, Smint, Fruittella, Alpenliebe, Golia, Vivdent, Airheads, Happydent & Big Bagol. The Group has corporate headquarters in Italy and The Netherlands.

About McKinney

In 2012, McKinney was named the most effective independent agency in the world by Effie Worldwide. This year, the agency was named the third most effective agency office in North America by Effie and its client Mizuno USA, the most effective brand in North America.

Over the past year, McKinney has won 49 major industry awards including six Effies, a Cannes Lion and six IAB MIXX Awards (including Best in Show). Founded in 1969, McKinney is recognized for having one of the most innovative business models in the industry, focused on big ideas brought to life in powerful conversations between people and brands. McKinney has also been recognized as one of the best U.S. agencies, one of the Best Places to Work in Marketing & Media by Advertising Age, and one of a handful of agencies setting the standard for creativity by One Magazine. In addition to Mentos, the agency's clients include Nationwide, Nationwide Financial, Travelocity, Samsung, Hankook, Sherwin-Williams, Gold's Gym, Mizuno, Royal Canin, CenturyLink, Dognition, Big Boss Brewing, Durham Convention & Visitors Bureau, and Urban Ministries of Durham. McKinney is part of Cheil Worldwide, one of the world's leading marketing communications networks with 55 offices in 30 countries. McKinney has offices in both Durham, North Carolina, and New York.

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