Web Series Review: Lacta Chocolate ‘From the Start’

I Want Chocolate! And I Have a Chocolate Allergy!

That’s right, fair reader! I have a chocolate allergy. When most people hear this they say, “Oh no! How do you live? How do you live?” I say I’ve gotten this far without it, so it’s really no big deal; however, that was before I saw From the Start from Lacta Chocolate’s brand campaign. Now I want chocolate and I want it now!

From the Start, which competed in the 2017 Cannes Grand Prix, was a Greek web series that followed Philip, a man who refused to settle down… until he ate a piece of Lacta Chocolate given to him by a mysterious vendor. Upon eating the first bite, he was transported to a party where he saw the woman of his dreams; however, the experience only lasted as long as the first bite melted in his mouth. Thus, he continued to purchase Lacta Chocolate to see her again and again, and soon believed she could be a real person and set out to find her.

From the Start was the centerpiece of Lacta’s brand campaign, which aimed to re-invigorate its sales amidst a deepening recession and intense, almost-survivalist market. The goal was to equate the delightful taste of their chocolate to the sweet feeling of falling in love. They may not have won the Grand Prix, but they made a darn good short film and may have won a thing or two in the end.

Lacta Chocolate Makes Love Happen

Some Good:

  • Product Incorporation –What better way to have continuous product placement! Instead of it annoyingly showing up everywhere, Lacta added value to the chocolate bars. It was Philip’s vehicle to Danae and like him we wanted to return to her and there was only one way to do it. So, what did we want him to do? Buy that dang chocolate! Oh, another shout out to the strategic use of Lacta’s brand colors. From some clever production design, use of lights, a red jeep and Danae’s outfit – even if there wasn’t a chocolate bar on screen, Lacta was present.
  • The Film Itself – This builds off the first point. Very quickly I forgot I was watching an extended commercial. Instead, I was wrapped in the story, which was spread over five webisodes, and looked at Lacta not as an ad, but a way to happiness for the protagonist, who we all could relate to (the biggest way to get someone interested in your story or product – be relatable). Not all of us can eat chocolate, but we can all love. What better way to ensnare your target audience?

Some Bad:

  • There was nothing bad with this branded short film! The only negative takeaway I had was, yet again, mainstream film was trumped by a doggone commercial. They gave us an exceptionally well-made film, with a great, fantastical story and made a guy who is allergic to chocolate want chocolate.

Lacta Chocolate Short Film

The Takeaway:

So did this work in the end? Did this branded short film help Lacta? Well…

1. From the Start got 2 million views in a country with just 5 million Internet users.

Okay, not bad.

2. Lacta’s YouTube channel became the number one Greek YouTube channel in views and subscribers.

All right, that’s a good sign.

3. From the Start won the hearts of critics and audience members and was even picked up by a major network and turned into a TV movie!

Well! Now we’re getting somewhere.

4. Lacta saw a 14.3 % market turnaround in its chocolate sales. It went from being -10% to being + 4.3%!

Score: Lacta 4 – Recession 0

5. And all the way here in America, Lacta caught the eye of a young, midwestern bloke who’s allergic to chocolate … and they made him want some.

Game: Lacta.

AUTHOR: Dan Nelsen
ORIGIN: Speaking Human Contributor

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