Sheba’s ‘Wet Kitten Food’: Not a dry eye in the house

kitten ShebaIt has long been said that pictures of cute pets not only boost readership rates and social media engagement levels, they also make us feel happier and more positive.

So, prepare to share and snigger all the way this week with the launch of the latest marketing campaign from Mars-owned cat-food brand Sheba, promoting its new range of Perfect Portions Wet Kitten Food.

You see, according to new research carried out by the brand, cat lovers – or pet parents as they are now known apparently – will do virtually anything for their kitten; and even those who are allergic to cats still can’t resist.

Developed with AMV BBDO, the creative work includes three 15-second films and print ads, alongside PR support and social influencer engagement. Media has been handled by Essence Mediacom.

One of the spots opens with “Devonte” cuddling a kitten and he is seemingly so in love with the cute moggy that it brings tears to his eyes. As a specially written 1950s-style ballad plays – “Love is tender, love is cruel. You’re under my skin, baby, all I can think of is you. They call it love” – it becomes apparent his tears are not of love but are in fact an allergic reaction to his four-legged chum.

An onscreen line informs that “1 in 4 cat owners are allergic to cats but still can’t resist” as the kitten is shown being fed with Sheba Perfect Portions Wet Kitten Food.

Another spot in the campaign features “Eleanor”, smiling as she cuddles what appears to be the same kitten. As the ballad plays out she turns to the screen to reveal that her eye is swollen and puffy due to her allergy but she simply can’t resist the charms of her furry friend.

And, just in case this has got you hooked, the new Sheba Kitten range comes in two flavours – Savoury Chicken and Delicate Salmon – and can be found nationwide in-store and online at major retailers.

Mars Petcare vice president of marketing Jean-Paul Jansen said: “We know the power that cats hold over their people. The Sheba brand puts cats at the heart of everything we do. With the expansion into this new kitten product line, we’re continuing to create premium offerings to build a lifelong bond between cats and their owners from the start.”

AMV BBDO creative partners Polina Zabrodskaya and Andre Sallowicz added: “This insight confirms that people will do anything for their kitten – including enduring sneezing, itching, and swelling – all in the name of love; we wanted to capture this portrait of cat ownership and celebrate the willingness to give in.”

So, what is the consensus around the Decision Marketing office?

Well, suffice to say, our office cat “Lyla” is something of an acquired taste. Not that we have found anyone who actually likes her yet. In fact, it seems she is the one who is allergic to people rather than the other way round and you are more likely to get scratched to buggery if you go anywhere near her rather than a cuddle.

Still, we do like this ad, which strikes the right balance of soppiness and humour. If only Lyla was as cute. Ah well, may be the next one will be…

Decision Marketing Adometer: A ‘purring’ 8 out of 10

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