On the day of London Pride, Skittles declared in an open letter that on this day “only one rainbow deserves to be the centre of attention – yours.”
When you think Skittles, you think of the rainbow. But the rainbow is also the symbol of LGBT Pride. 2016 was a tough year for LGBT rights around the world, with the tragic shootings in Orlando and increased persecution of LGBT people in many countries including Russia.
We wanted to get people talking about us by cutting through the category conventions and supporting a cause close to our Rainbow-coloured hearts, LGBT Pride.
Skittles gave its rainbow up to celebrate Pride
We can’t put this better than the wording of Skittles’ open letter to Pride (which ran the day before in the Evening Standard, and targeting Millenials on Facebook):
“You have the rainbow … we have the rainbow … and usually that’s just hunky-dory. But this Pride, only one rainbow deserves to be the centre of attention – yours. And we’re not going to be the ones to steal your rainbow thunder. That’s why this weekend, we’re giving up our rainbow. But don’t worry, we’ll still be there to celebrate every colourful minute with you, we’ll just be completely starkers while we do it. Have a great day, Pride. From Skittles.”
On Pride day our packs and media stripped. All colour was removed from the packaging, form our communications – and even from the Skittles themselves.
We turned the open letter into a video for social media declaring our intent to get completely starkers in support, using the hashtag #onerainbow. MediaCom’s inﬂuencer team sent the special ‘naked’ packs out to key inﬂuencers exclusively in advance to build coverage online.
We joined the Pride parade in a black and white ﬂoat, handing out special limited edition rainbowless white packets of Skittles along the way (even the Skittles themselves were white). We targeted every digital panel within 100 metres of the Pride march to showcase our striptease from rainbow to monochrome. Meanwhile the Skittles website and social channels all gave up their rainbow too for the duration of Pride day
Our work drove 31m impressions, 56% of which (17m) were organic.
The campaign was picked up by major publications and talked about in over 80 countries and 339 cities, resulting in a 470% increase in buzz pre to post Pride (YouGov)
The campaign was so successful that Tesco approached Skittles to work together in 2017 to sell 3 million rainbowless packs to raise money for LGBT+ charities
Skittles won best newcomer award at the Pride in London parade