As the Canadian allergy category grew in competition, Reactine aimed to find a way to stand when pollen was high. Our objective was to show the brand understood the consumers frustration with seasonal allergies and provide them real-time alerts relevant to their location to prompt them to purchase Reactine.
Allergy relief is an intensely competitive category. Reactine was the #1 share leader, but share was in decline, with highly active competitors and new players entering the market. It wouldn’t be enough to simply provide a reassuring and familiar presence. Reactine had to prove it was #1 at stopping allergies.
We found that when allergies strike, nothing else matters except getting relief and getting it fast. We also learned that, contrary to the conventional category approach, consumers don’t want to be mocked by over-exaggerated ads depicting symptoms. They want a brand to truly understand their suffering and provide utility – and walk the fine line between having fun while sympathizing with the consumer.
Allergies can differ depending on location, and since Canada is such a large country, this was essential to keep in mind. For instance, the pollen may be low in Vancouver but in Toronto it may be extremely high. Additionally, historical pollen data has shown that at the exact same time, even regions 30km apart can vary significantly in pollen levels. To remain relevant with consumers, geo-targeting plays a very important role in the allergy category.
Canadian allergies are diverse. Cities are hit with different pollen waves at different times. The data insights allowed us to take a precision-driven vs. a broad reach approach to connect with our audience in the most receptive moments, driving tremendous ROI. To stay relevant when allergies were at their peak, our strategy was to customize our messaging by city through geo-location targeting to keep sufferers informed of pollen-levels, in real-time.
To maximize relevance, Reactine provided peak pollen alerts when it counted most. We forged an innovative partnership with Aerobiology Research Laboratories to analyze pollen-levels in cities across Canada.
To stay relevant when allergies were at their peak, we collected data through Aerobiology Research Laboratories to drive our strategy: namely, to customize our messaging by city to keep sufferers informed of pollen-levels, in real-time.
Then we created 6-second videos through a custom YouTube execution that dynamically delivered tailored pollen forecasts to targeted cities, based on the Aerobiology data that was gathered. YouTube engineers created a matrix on the back-end that was updated daily with Aerobiology data which ensured the right creative and pollen information would be served to the right city daily.
Capitalizing on this new YouTube bumper unit, Reactine delivered customized, short snackable content to the consumer, while providing them the value they seek. We adapted our 6-second videos with different compelling call-to-actions. When pollen was low, we celebrated with consumers, encouraging them to get outside and enjoy the day. But when pollen was high, we acted as a warning to prepare.
Reactine pollen alerts gave the brand great scale and flexibility like never before. Using real-time data triggers, video buys were optimized market-by-market, based on pollen aerobiology data, shopper and consumption data in real-time, allowing Reactine to be hyper-relevant to consumers in the moment. A first for both brand and YouTube!
This unique approach allowed Reactine to dynamically invest where it counted, scale-back where it didn’t and further fine-tune its investments based on shopper response and volume potential.
Creative messaging was adapted for each location, creating a customized approach to the Reactine Pollen Alerts. On the same day, Vancouver could receive an alert saying “Hey Vancouver, your pollen forecast is low today. So get outside!” while Toronto could be receiving a messaging saying “It’s high pollen this week Toronto! Good thing there’s Reactine!”.
When the Maritimes were hit with high pollen levels in May, Reactine increased investment in those cities to ensure the brand was top of mind when people were suffering and scaled back in other areas of the country that had lower pollen levels. Similarly, when high pollen unexpectedly hit the West coast in June, once again Reactine adapted their strategy in real time to increase investment in those cities that were likely to be suffering from seasonal allergies and scale back in other cities.