Did somebody say Doritos? Not in the brand's big new advertising campaign they didn't.
Frito-Lay on Monday launched what it's calling an "anti-advertising" effort for Doritos, with the brand's name and logo completely absent from a 60-second TV spot (premiering during tonight's MTV Video Music Awards) as well as the brand's website and social media channels.
The theme of the campaign, crafted by Goodby Silverstein & Partners, is "Another Level." "An ad with no logo? That's another level," says the voiceover at the end of the launch spot, which you can see here:
As part of the campaign, Doritos is removing its logo and brand mentions, including all previous content, from its social channels. In its place will be new content crowdsourced from fans sharing what "Another Level" means to them. The name Doritos is replaced by "LogoGoesHere."
Here's how the Instagram will look:
Doritos says this is the largest digital investment it's done for a brand campaign. The work also features partnerships with Uproxx and NTRWK (80 percent of whose users are 18-24) along with YouTube ads and other digital assets. There is TV and radio, with an emphasis on streaming platforms.
Not all branding is missing, though. The campaign keeps the brand's red and blue color palette, as well as its triangle motif refererencing the chips themselves. For example, consumers will be able to "triangle themselves" with a SnapChat lens. The OOH work also leans heavily on the triangle.
The work fits into a well-established anti-advertising trend of late. One of the more buzzy campaigns in the U.K. this year was the BrewDog campaign from Uncommon, which was very self-conscious about the act of advertising—positioning its product pitches as more "honest" than other brands'.
The same general idea is at work in the Doritos campaign. The point, of course, is that Gen Z dislikes overt advertising, and may be more forgiving toward witty, self-aware campaigns.
Ironically, while the name and logo are missing, the campaign feels more heavily branded than most. Indeed, it's about the brand and how iconic it is. Whether that will appeal to Gen Z audiences remains to be seen. Will this group, which hates being pitched to, enjoy work that's really nothing but a pitch—thinly disguised to flatter the target.
A few brands have gotten away with doing "unbranded" work. The McDonald's ads in France a few years back were successful because they weren't self-congratulatory—they silently embodied the iconic nature of the products. And in general, "anti-advertising" is usually more palatable when it's entertaining, à la the old Newcastle work. The Doritos stuff, by contrast, has so much self-regard, it isn't very entertaining at all.
In the end, it feels pretty ignorable for a demo that the brand so desperately wants to impress.
Agency: Goodby Silverstein & Partners
Chairman: Rich Silverstein and Jeff Goodby
Chief Creative Officer: Margaret Johnson
Creative Director: Laura Petruccelli + Rohan Cooke
Art Director: Matt McNulty
Copywriter: AJ Warren
Social: Jason Gan + Clark Chamberlin
Director of Broadcast Production: Tod Puckett
Executive Producer: Christina Wells + Nick Sage
Group Brand Strategy Director: Ralph Paone
Senior Brand Strategist: Ida Persson
Communication Strategy Director: Caitlin Neelon
Communication Strategist: Drew Forrest
Managing Partner: Brian McPherson
Group Account Director: Meredith Williams + Jenna Duboe
Account Director: Chris Nilsen
Account Manager: Ariel Berk
Assistant Account Manager: Jordan Lofy
Director of Business Affairs: Judy Ybarra
Business Affairs Manager: Annie Holmgren
Chief Marketing Officer: Jennifer Saenz
Vice President of Marketing: Rachel Ferdinando
Sr. Director, Doritos: Leslie Vesper
Director, Doritos: Gisela Saenz
Director Strategic Insights and Analytics: Brodie Dunn
Marketing Assoc. Manager, Strategic Insights & Analytics: Jacob Tucker
Communications Director: Chris Yemma
Brand Public Relations Manager: Courtney Cola