written by: Chan Hiu Yan

Enhance relationship while enjoying a piece of chocolate in between breaks
The pronunciation of KitKat in Japanese is similar to the meaning of “will surely win”, KitKat leverages this borrowed meaning of the brand and launch the KitMail campaign in 2009 targeting to students at exam times every year from December to March. KitMail is about sending messages of love and affection. Japanese people use KitMail as a gift of encouragement. An aerogram is wrapped around the chocolate bar for people to hand-write messages on it. The pack itself is an aerogram could be mailed directly to the recipient (student).

Cross-Over of Kitmail with Boy Band and Hologram
KitMail is only available in post office. The price is economical, costing only around HKD18. In 2016, KitMail cross-over with a popular boy band called the Dish with the hologram technology, the heated trend at the time. A 3D video image featuring Dish (the boy band) singing a song of encouragement could be shown with the hologram.

Effectiveness of KitMail Campaign
In 2009, the year the KitMail campaign is launched, KitMail achieved US$11M earned media value. In 2016, after launching the KitMail x 3D hologram program, 260K mails are delivered, 33K tweets are shared and the sales volume increased by 150%.

Insights into the success of KitMail Hologram
KitMail is an exclusive and strategic partnership with the 20K-outlet post office that no commercial firm has pulled off before. KitKat is clearly targeting to the youth segment, only this time it extends to a behavioral segment that purchase the product because of the affection and care to the youth segment over a particular sentiment related to exams. The big idea capitalizes on the global trend of hologram and pop stars with high relevance to the youth segment. The idea of savoring a piece of chocolate over a break is further uplifted by the enjoyment of pop music with the help of a hologram. The fondness of sending blessings in written letters also fits in well with the culturally context of Japan.

KitMail is a brand-building campaign that builds emotional tie with KitKat’s customers. When it comes to buying a snack, it is a low involvement product that does not cost much, fast in consumption and only good for casual and short term enjoyment. KitMail injects experiential value to the brand (for both the sender and the receiver) and make the snack a gift of choice. Above all, achieve phenomenal success in boosting sales.

The KitMail hologram campaign works well with the notions of enhancing relationship, encouragement, entertainment by music videos and the delight of enjoying a break.

Reference:
Charlotte McEleny (2016). Kit Kat turns packaging into holograms of a Japanese boy band. http://www.thedrum.com/news/2016/01/22/kit-kat-turns-packaging-holograms-japanese-boy-band

Kit Kat Wins Cannes Media Grand Prix for Edible Postcard
http://adage.com/article/special-report-cannes-2009/cannes-advertising-festival-kit-kat-wins-media-grand-prix/137520/