Digital Marketing
3 min

Candy Campaigns: Snickers


Snickers is an older brand than you might think. The maker of those delicious (and deliciously filling) peanut, nougat, and chocolate bars has been in business for over 80 years, with parent company Mars first rolling out the Snickers bar in 1930. Since then, Snickers has become a billion dollar business selling in markets all across the globe to hungry people everywhere.

Making hungry people into happy people has become, in many ways, the signature Snickers move. The company’s most popular, and most enduring, advertising campaign has featured the slogan “You’re not you when you’re hungry” for years, and it’s been a phenomenal success.

When Mars was experiencing flagging sales with the Snickers bar in the mid 2000s, they decided to reimagine their advertising in an attempt to give Snickers a fresher, newer, and more delectable look.

This overhaul led to the creation of the brilliant and long-enduring “You’re not you when you’re hungry” campaign, which had the incredible effect of increasing global sales of Snickers by a staggering 16%. “You’re not you when you’re hungry” has since become the centerpiece of all Snickers advertising, leading to spin off campaigns, a series of virally successful commercials, heaps of advertising awards, and most importantly for parent company Mars, brand staying power.

This Halloween, when you’re pawing through your trick-or-treat bag to get at all the fun-size Snickers so you can chow down, remember the advertising greatness that brought you there. No Halloween reveler will ever go hungry again.

You’re Not You When You’re Hungry

The campaign that started Snickers’ recent rise to claim the candy throne. These beloved commercials have become iconic, with A-list stars like Betty White appearing in them and making them a smash hit with consumers. Personally, this is by far my favorite incarnation of the You’re Not You When You’re Hungry ad, because who doesn’t love Betty White?

SNICKERS® Hungerithm

This offshoot of the “You’re Not You When You’re Hungry” campaign comes from Australia, and it’s worth seeing, because the concept is pretty brilliant. Through cooperation with 7/11 convenience stores, Snickers created a “Hungerithm”– a hunger algorithm – to track online mood, and drop the prices of snickers when people were feeling, well, not so great. The “Hungerithm” monitors social media in order to make these price adjustments, and hangry (hungry + angry) folks can lock in a price and head to their local 7/11 to grab a bar and feel better.

Have you got a favorite version of these famous Snickers commercials? Share in the comments below!

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