Mar 02

Yawn. New Skittles Site is Different, Yet Boring

Come on, Skittles! I loved you as a kid! You were my favorite Halloween candy besides the chocolate!

So why the lame site?

Skittles is jumping the social media bandwagon by integrating YouTube, Flickr, Facebook, and Twitter into its website. That’s basically their site. Why do I think this is a lame idea they probably paid way too much money for?

1.) IT’S FREAKING CANDY. Unless it’s Pop Rocks and is killing kids or something, no one is going to talk about it. The novelty of your site will wear off quickly and your designers will be laughing all the way to the bank. Candy is not a social object that gets the blogosphere talking.
2.) It looks unprofessional. The people who are going to your website who are looking for nutritional information or allergy info are doing to think you are going bankrupt.

What would I have done if Mars had hired me?
1.) An interactive flash element that allowed people to play and make arrangements with Skittle graphics.
2.) Games. “Easter eggs” (fun elements) hidden throughout your site. Kids love playing games online. Advertise on your candy package that you have games on your site. Have a leader board and everything (first name and last initial only, of course. Gotta protect the kids). Kids love games–now kids REALLY love your candy.
3.) A scholarship contest where kids can win a $2k scholarship and a Toys R Us gift card for kid created “Skittles” art (Skittles glued to paper to make pictures). Advertise to mommy bloggers and have them upload pics up on Flickr.

No, instead you have a lame site no one understands but the very select niche of people who use social networks. Your audience (=primarily kids) will not care about it at all. Props.

  • http://atxryan.com Ryan Joy

    I agree completely. This seems so off base for a sustained branding campaign. No one will be mentioning ‘skittles’ on Twitter in a week and then what?

    Ryan Joys last blog post..Twitter Updates for 2009-02-28

  • http://michellesblog.net Michelle

    Ryan,

    The dumbest part of this campaign? Your primary audience is under 18 and therefore is too young to join a social network to add buzz.

    Seriously, I wonder how much they paid for that site.

  • Sophie Besson

    Companies like Mars no longer market directly to “kids” (people under 13) to cooperate with some federal regulations and CARU, but more importantly because it’s the right thing to do in this age of childhood obesity, etc. So they did what they could and went for the high-schoolers and college kids on those most popular social networks. I think for the audience it’s a decent effort and though it doesn’t have long legs, the novelty will give them a nice (albeit unsustainable spike).

    While I completely agree than games and candy are a great pair, I also doubt that the 2 people who ever went to Skittles.com before this little tidal wave of publicity were looking for things to do. I think you had it right the first time – the only reason to go is to get the nutritional and allergy info. So why try to make people stay on that site for some contrived reason?

    If Skittles just wants to get people chattering about them, this site can be dubbed a success because they are. Check out the Facebook page and the 239 people who “liked” some stupid status comment, not to mention the 609K+ people who are now “Fans.” Some people at Skittles are pretty happy right now and frankly, I’d bet Agency.com didn’t charge them enough for the “success” that this is going be named internally at Mars.

    And no, I don’t work for the agency or the advertiser….but I wish I did :-)