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Quaker Life Cereal

Going Old-School to Give a Once-Loved Cereal Brand New Life.


How can Life cereal prove to a major retail partner that it’s more than just Mikey who likes it?

The cereal category has been in decline since 2016, but one Life-sized brand found a way to increase sales over 7% for a major retail partner through earned media. The business goal was simple: invest in Life cereal to maintain shelf space. The situational reality: not so simple.

The cereal category had lost $400 million since 2016, and Life was becoming a distant memory. The budget was small, with in-store presence and events at five stores of a major retail partner and minimal digital support. This meant PR had to wear many hats — drive traffic, generate participation and interest in events, amplify national coverage, and provide coast-to-coast support.

An old-school campaign with a brand-new twist.

We captured consumers and substantiated with the retailer through a modernized “Mikey likes it!” activation, including a nationwide search for the next Mikey via casting calls at select store locations.

We also engaged other well-known “Mikeys” — Olympic swimmer Michael Phelps, Ugly Betty’s Michael Urie and Destiny’s Child’s Michelle Williams — to recreate the campaign and share via social.

And key communications distributed to local and national media featured celebrity content, product information, contest details and oversized Life cereal box mailers, including a vintage bowl, spoon and t-shirt for campaign re-creation.

New life for Life cereal.

Our efforts proved once and for all the power of PR. We increased Life cereal sales by 7.2% when the market was declining, brand love was dying and PR tactics were activated. Famous Mikey Instagram and Facebook channels garnered 135,000 likes and 829 comments, and 515 total people entered the contest in-person and online. Overall, the activation not only gave new life to Life and reestablished the brand’s category prestige, but it also secured the shelf space.