NatureSweet has been the leading grower of premium, fresh tomatoes in North America for over 15 years.
Its target consumer, affectionately called “Anna,” loves NatureSweet tomatoes. Anna is an educated mother of two, with a household income over $80,000. She cares about feeding her kids healthy food and will pay more for quality. The problem is, Anna doesn’t realize she’s buying NatureSweet. She buys those “little tomatoes in the cute packages.” With increasingly crowded shelves in the produce aisle and copycat competitors, NatureSweet knew it had to distinguish its brand once and for all.
So after an on-and-off 18-year relationship developing successful one-off television spots, NatureSweet was finally ready for more help from The Richards Group. To keep its rightful place as number one, it needed a big, overarching campaign – including a new website – to tell the whole story of their brand.
Luckily, we know a thing or two about storytelling.
Of course, NatureSweet wanted to increase sales. But more than that, it wanted to educate Anna about its unique and sustainable growing practices, so that every time she entered the produce section at her local store, she would always reach for NatureSweet without hesitation.
Since NatureSweet has a big story to tell, we had to be strategic about how we used media. We knew we couldn’t tell the whole story everywhere, so we focused on using each medium to its full potential.
In TV, if the viewer were to take away one piece of information, it should be the highest calling of our brand: NatureSweet tomatoes are raised right. So we created short and sweet (reminiscent of the sweet little fruit) 15-second animated spots that tell stories about animals raising their children right. Here’s the thing: Those animals are line drawings with NatureSweet tomatoes as their heads or bodies. This kept the product ever-present in the creative work.
On NatureSweet.com, we built a nontemplated, experiential website. Instead of designing a product-first site, we told Anna our full story, giving her the proof behind why.
NatureSweet tomatoes are raised right. With a clean, simple approach using the iconic NatureSweet yellow, an animated SunBursts tomato bumblebee welcomes you to the homepage. Via parallax functionality, as you scroll down, the bee flies into each frame with an interesting fact leading you through NatureSweet’s growing process.
We created digital display ads with the same little bee, spouting little growing teasers, that ultimately drove viewers to the website.
In print, we used space to our advantage. In a sea of NatureSweet yellow, a cute little tomato character (or characters) and a short, sweet headline grab the reader’s attention. Since the tomatoes are actual size and much smaller than the print space, the layouts are always refreshingly simple – helping them stand out from other crowded content. Read on, and the body copy proves NatureSweet’s “raised right” claims.
As for social media, we mix our line-drawn character animations with lifestyle shots, package hacks, recipes, and creative ideas to brighten Anna’s day. Inspiring Anna to reuse our packages bolsters our sustainability message, and playing off calendar holidays or big pop-culture events makes sure NatureSweet is always top of mind.
Extra projects included designing a trade-show booth for produce shows, T-shirts, buttons, leave-behinds, a style guide, and much more.
And our work continues. Our initial projects launched the campaign. We are working on new TV spots and digital ad units to introduce new products. And we’re designing a more robust website featuring an in-depth look at the amazing NatureSweet associates and the company’s unparalleled commitment to sustainability.
Though the TV has been live in only the Minneapolis test market, it has garnered unbelievable results. In Minneapolis, NatureSweet sales have gone up a whopping 75 percent.