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Special K ‘Powering You’ / Leo Burnett

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Special K’s latest campaign entitled ‘Powering You’ aims to move the brand away from its previous associations with dieting and towards a positioning that sees consumers recognise it as a nutritional breakfast choice that helps fuel life’s great adventures, particularly for women. The brand has swapped its iconic young trim women in red swimsuits for pregnant women in yellow swimsuits, middle aged ladies running in the park, female artisans and tattooed cyclists in a spot that celebrates the cereal’s health benefits including iron, folic acid and vitamin D.


Created by Leo Burnett, the 60-second film shows the different women throughout different points in their day from dusk until dawn, with each shot tying a different healthy ingredient to the needs of the woman in question, including protein to feed the strength of the cyclist and a busy new mother, and iron to feed the endurance of girls undertaking a gruelling assault course. The images of powerful women are interlaced with shots of the cereal bursting into the air, demonstrating its ability to fuel action. The ad ends with the voiceover stating, ‘everything that we’re made of, powers what you’re made of’, encouraging women to eat Special K and become the best version of themselves.



Alongside the TV spot which launched on Boxing Day, the campaign will include outdoor, digital and print activity. Digital work includes a series of 10-second spots and gifs to run on social media and outdoor work will involve four executions. A second stage of the campaign will involve partnerships with retailers such as Argos, Asda and Tesco, loyalty scheme Nectar and healthy lifestyle app MyFitnessPal.


The work brings the brand into the present day and will go a long way in its mission to regain the trust of consumers who have fallen out of love with ‘diet brands’. With the cereal market on the decline, this campaign seems to work well to turn the idea of cereal as an unhealthy breakfast choice around by focusing on its nutritional benefits. Yet it also highlights its practical benefits – the ad shows that whether you’re taking a quick stop from riding a bike or sat working at a desk, cereal products can be a quick and easy food option which is perfect for active women.


Through the inclusion of a diverse range of examples of strong women, Special K manages to successfully position itself as a brand that both physically powers as well as empowers women. With the celebration of women and healthy living both topics which are very much part of our current climate, Kellogg’s have hit the nail on the head with this clever brand makeover.


Senior marketing director for Balance and Health at Kellogg’s Tracy Murphy said of the work: “We’re conscious that the brand is perceived by some as an old-fashioned diet brand and so we need to really drive reappraisal, especially amongst younger women. We want to clearly signal a change in our strategy and demonstrate that Special K has positive nutrition that powers women”.