What Is Radio’s Mentos-And-Diet Coke Combination?

Drop a Mentos candy into a bottle of Diet Coke and what happens? A huge brand explosion, that’s what.

Even if you have never eaten a Mentos mint, you likely know what they are thanks to a series of brand-extending experiments and their YouTube videos. Mentos are dropped into bottles of Diet Coke and- whoosh– an erupting volcano of viral marketing power is unleashed.

Since 2006, when Mentos recognized the crossroads of good fortune and opportunity (independently produced brand-extension videos and the advent of social media), they have built a massive fan base. And in 2010 Mentos significantly increased sales despite having used virtually no traditional media marketing.

In a recent  Advertising Age article, Matt Fischer, chief creative officer of dmr’s social media partner agency Curiosity Advertising says that what is most satisfying about the Mentos Facebook success is that a majority of their posts and content are coming from fans, something that is not true for other packaged-goods competitors. Fischer believes that another key factor in their Facebook success is that “consumers loved [Mentos’] quirky optimism,” which one might equate to a radio station’s “stationality.”

Fischer echoed these points as he presented a social framework for radio to consider at last month’s Arbitron Client Conference in Baltimore. If you’d like a copy of Matt’s presentation, please email or call Tripp Eldredge at 859-957-1590.

So what is your radio station’s Mentos-and-Diet Coke combination? Do you have listener-generated video, audio, texts or e-mails that you can use in your social media to generate commentary, recommendations, or better yet, some kind of brand extension? And is the “voice” of your own posts and content matching your on-air stationality?

As broadcasters and social media directors those should be the goals for reaching a Mentos and Diet Coke-like launch point.

–Fletcher Keyes*

*Fletcher Keyes is a long-time morning show personality,  radio programmer and new contributor to dmr’s The End Result.

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