Got Milk? And the Value of Emotional Connection
Do you remember countless celebrities photographed with the iconic milk mustache from the 90s? That was, essentially, phase two of the Got Milk campaign. We have Goodby, Silverstein, and Partners to thank for phase one and the creation of “Got Milk?” as a campaign. Before that, Milk’s primary campaign was “Milk. It does a body good.” A little “womp womp” if you ask me.
According to Fast Company, 80% of consumers came into contact with the “Got Milk?” campaign on any given day during the ’90s and ’00s. It was everywhere. For two decades. It won countless industry awards and launched a type of marketing called ‘Deprivation Marketing.’ Fast Company says, “Instead of selling the product to consumers, Goodby and his team would sell the lack of a product.” What’s remarkable about this type of Marketing is the emotional connection felt by the consumer to the product. We see this similar connection when the software being implemented is directly tied to a pain that is felt or a goal that has been just out of reach.
A few other ideas about the origin of “Got Milk?”
- Arguably the most famous commodity brand campaign – was an accident; It was the name Jeff Goodby called one of the early meetings.
- In focus groups, people shared that they only noticed Milk when they ran out of it.
- This led to the idea that the absence of the product might be the campaign.
- Milk is not sexy, and few people at the agency wanted to work on this campaign.
The “Got Milk?” campaign has a lot to teach us.
- The combination of emotional connection and deprivation marketing is potent.
- Sometimes, the absence of the thing is more powerful than the presence of the thing.
- The campaign successfully tapdanced on our emotional response to running out of Milk – what are you working on that might illicit that same type of response?
- Milk is a boring topic, but this campaign somehow launched several careers (including Michael Bay – see his Aaron Burr video below) – never turn your back on creating, even if it sounds boring.
- Software Implementation can be boring too – so what are you doing to tie emotions to success?
From Campaign Live out of the UK, “When something is part of life, the way to get people to notice it is to take it away. And the way to make that noticeable is to have fun and not take yourself seriously.” So, how can this idea assist you through your Digital Transformation or Change Management effort?
References and Resources
Aaron Burr – Got Milk Commercial (1993)
Campaign Live – Deprivation Marketing