Agency: VaynerMedia| Client: Sour Patch Kids| Role: Sr. Art Direction, Design, Illustration
I designed the look/feel & helped identify the personality of the brands digital/social presence then I oversaw it's development from one designer to the next.
Sour Patch Kids without a doubt one of my most favorite accounts that I have ever worked on. Myself and my writing partners at the time, Clare & Caitlin had the privilege of pitching then winning this account. It was pleasure setting the social & digital standard for this brand. My vision was to make sure that when we used the animated kids in any situation— that they felt as real as possible & Sour in every way (except for when they were being Sweet). It wasn't always easy because in the beginning, we only had access to flat art and in the flat art, the kids were frozen in one pose but we pulled it off— the fans/consumers & the client loved it even more than we did. Hope you enjoy it too!
Hacking Twitter’s Native Image Preview Settings
Images in Twitter’s news feed are served up with a white background but when clicked/tapped-on, the image is enlarge within a gallery window that has a black background. After discovering this, I came up with an idea which involved us making the image translucent/transparent in just the right places, then export a png the allows for transparent background when appearing in-front of the black gallery window background and vula, an image that transforms into a new image when tapped-on. This one was brilliantly executed by our designer Robbie with my direction.
We created a trick or treat experience on Instagram which I am very proud of.
Fans visited our 9 spooky houses, watched animation which I designed & directed, chose either a Sour or Sweet ending by commenting with one of our hashtags. Our community manager would then respond with a fun Sour or Sweet image & a personalized message that wrapped up the whole experience. And if you were really lucky, we’d surprise you with free candy too.
SPK realizes how difficult it is to ask someone to Prom BUT if that person says yes, how equally EPIC it is to get to got to Prom with that person. And we also noticed how extremely popular Promposal’s were in teen culture. So we thought we’d pull together 4 of the most sought after teen influencers and let our fans know that if they submitted a truly impressive Promposal to an influencer of their choosing; that fan might just get choosen by that influencer to go the SPK Prom as the influencers date! So we created a Tumblr to accept submissions, put the word out on our social channels and the word spread like wild fire.
Valentines Day with SPK
Look, Sour Patch Kids is all about being Sour THEN Sweet. So we just put it out there then make up for it later. When a person doesn’t have a date for Valentine’s Day, it’s all kinds of Sour. So we just thought we’d turn that into Supa Sweet instead. We did this by embracing Single Awareness Day! Or SAD, if you’re clever.
With our SPK SAD campaign we decided to launch on the Teen Fiction platform, Watt Pad, and ask our fans to write short Sour THEN Sweet love stories that celebrated singledom or celebrated love. We got the word out on all of our other social channels to encourage fan submissions then later encouraged them to come back and vote on their faves. It was a monster hit and in the end, the fans not only picked a terrific winner who scored tons of SPK swag & candy but we ALSO made an animated short video of their story starring the SPK’s themselves. I storyboarded, created the hand-made sets & directed the action.
Money Back Guaranteed— CONCEPT
Stride was prepparing to announce it’s Sour Patch Kids Watermelon flavored gum.
I thought it’d be pretty awesome to set up a watermelon stand in the fruit sections of grocery stores around the country letting people know that this watermelon would be the best tasting watermelon they’ve ever eaten but if not then they’d get their money back. GUARANTEED!
Simply Snapchat @Stride with a photo of the fruit stand, circle True Or False then share. If True, you’d receive a personalized little message from the Watermelon SPK.
If False, you’d receive a Snapchat drawing of your hard earned money; no questions asked.
SPK Cheat Sheet
Basically this is a very condensed Style Guide that I designed for all my designers who would work on the team. It's intended to quickly give them an idea of how I set up look/feel for the brand and how I expected it to be executed. But it's also an ever evolving deck, so nothing was entirely set in stone.
We were a Big Hit on all the social channels but I think we even surprised ourselves when we started killing it on Snapchat. Since the animated kids wouldn't work on this platform without feeling forced or disingenuous to the raw nature of Snapchat — Our goal in this space, was to focus on bringing the actual candy to life in as many ridiculous situations as possible. And when we did choose to use the animated kids; we'd literally print then cut-out the kids and not try to hide the fact that we were hand animating paper cut-out's.
Below is that one time I did a print for a trade publication :]