The results are in for Old El Paso’s five-part web series, featuring ex-Masterchef winner Andy Allen and fellow contestant Ben Milbourne.
Initial feedback indicates branded content could be a key element in spicing up part of the 2014 content marketing strategy for the multi-national food manufacturing company.
Created and produced by Sydney new media house, Projucer, and published on Andy Allen’s own Youtube channel earlier this year, ‘Andy and Ben Do Mexico’ sees the boys embark on a ‘best mates’ journey of culinary discovery and education, as they eat their way through Mexico. For Old El Paso, guided by their media agency, it represented an extra marketing avenue that had the potential to play a part in refreshing the brand’s perception amongst Australian consumers.
Using branded content alongside traditional marketing avenues is a proven method among sports and liquor brands, but is relatively untapped for companies in F&B such as Old El Paso. A key objective for Old El Paso was to increase the brand awareness and aspirational value of its product range. Aligning with a personality like Andy Allen and immersing the brand within a food-inspired, digitally published adventure achieved this. In addition, Old El Paso collaborated with Andy to create his own signature ‘easy-to-make’ dishes using its products in a series of bespoke videos published to his YouTube channel. A 15sec tailor made ‘pre-roll’ YouTube video was also produced; and all of this video content then benefited from a planned media spend.
The results from the series indicate the risk was well worth it, with Old El Paso enjoying strong consumer engagement on Youtube, in their own social media and across a range of strategic digital publishers. A strong domestic audience enjoyed the content (96% Australian views), a staggering 97% of viewers watched the tailored, skippable pre-roll advertisement in full, and the series performed above average across both social media interactions and YouTube viewer ratings. It also recorded viewer retention of 60% across the series, which for long-form branded content (4:00 – 10:00mins) is extremely rare.
Managing partner at Projucer, Josh Capelin, explains another key factor for Old El Paso was not only investing in the content itself, but that they could also test new advertising platforms in other mediums like TV.
“For an initial investment into our multi-platform opportunity, Old El Paso was able to effectively leverage and licence our content across multiple platforms for multiscreen experiences, including Foxtel, to reach different audience segments,” said Capelin. “While doing the numbers with their media agency, we estimated that during this period, content featuring Old El Paso’s products or brand has been watched for over 1500 hours. In an age when people’s attention spans are continually getting shorter, this is a stellar result for the brand.”
Due to these results and the success of the Mexican series, the show has been able to go on, literally. Projucer is currently in production of Series 2 – Andy & Ben Do Spain & Portugal, of which they’ve already released some behind the scenes video diaries. This trip sees the Aussie lads wild mushroom hunting near Barcelona, chowing on the King of Spain’s favourite dish in Madrid, and enjoying a helicopter flight over Lisbon followed by a seafood feast with famous Portuguese TV chef and restaurateur Jose Avillez.