How General Mills used mobile gaming to engage customers

Industry :
Capabilities : Product Innovation, Digital Advertising, Mobile, Social

The Challenge

There’s a kind of addictive quality to mobile gaming. Not unlike the craving people feel for Cinnamon Toast Crunch cereal. So when General Mills wanted to increase engagement of the Crazy Squares campaign among our kid and adult target we saw gamification as the best way to accomplish their goal, as well as helping them bring in new sales. 

The Idea

Like lots of breakfast cereals, Cinnamon Toast Crunch TV commercials featured a familiar set of characters: animated cereal squares. Except that these characters are crazy cannibals. After all, they taste so good, how can they resist eating each other?

We knew that these characters had legs (and teeth) beyond the TV spots.  They were perfect for a longer storyline. So we put them into the hands of mobile gamers—because research showed that’s where our target spends their time.  This game would enable them to engage with our squares whenever and wherever the craving struck them.

The premise of the game was simple: if you lived in a bowl full of cannibal cereal killers you’d be on the run. So we developed Milk River Run, a game based on the infinite runner genre. We sent our “Hero Square” down a river of milk in a world of obstacles and power-ups to both hinder and help him escape from the giant, hungry Crazy Square.

The Execution

    The Results

    Reviews were positive and thousands added their voices to the conversation around the game.

    ·      Over 700,000 downloads on iTunes and Google Play
    ·      #21 in Action Games for iPhone (Aug., 7, 2013)
    ·      #65 in Top Games for iPad (Jul., 18. 2013)
    ·      Great performance led to creation of a desktop version