Cap’n Horatio Magellan Crunch found himself embroiled in scandal the summer of 2013, when a Reddit user pointed out that although U.S. Navy captains have four stripes on their uniforms, Cap’n Crunch only has three, and therefore is not a real captain (posting a damning side by side comparison image). As this egregious accusation spread through Reddit, Quaker and the Cap’n’s social media team at Huge jumped on the opportunity to get involved with—and stoke-- a viral meme in real time, responding to fans and foes alike with defiant tweets defending Crunch’s good name.
Crunchgate, as it came to be called, exploded into a full-blown controversy as food bloggers, long time Crunch-lovers and even a spokesperson for the U.S. Navy itself weighed in. Stephen Colbert did a segment, and shows from Good Morning America to Anderson Cooper 360 featured the brouhaha. The campaign culminated with a video response from the Cap’n himself, officially and publicly responding to the mutinous rumors regarding his rank.
Crunchgate was just the type of buzz that Huge was hired to spark when we partnered with Quaker in 2012 to promote the Cap’n Crunch brand across social media. In this short period of time, the brand has had considerable success increasing engagement and positioning Cap’n Crunch as a producer of humorous, high-quality content--driven also by an original series of short videos we developed called The Cap'n Crunch Show--and a leader in social branding. Where previous social strategy relied heavily on asking the audience to engage with the brand, the new strategy focuses on establishing a fresh, irreverent narrative for the Cap’n and his crew.
For Twitter and Facebook, the Huge crew writes all editorial content and manages an ongoing editorial calendar, develops imagery and media to be published via social channels, responds to and engages with fans, crowdsources questions, seeds influencers and implements growth strategies. And also stands by, ready to defend the Cap’n’s honor at a moment’s notice.
Winner - 2013 Digiday SAMMY Award - Best Twitter Branding Campaign: Cap'n Crunch.
Winner - 2013 PR News Digital PR Awards - Twitter Communications: Cap'n Crunch.
Winner - 2013 PR News Digital PR Awards - WOW! Campaign: Cap'n Crunch.