Nestle Japan's KitKat franchise is always worth keeping an eye on—the brand is constantly innovating in ways that keep consumers engaged and coming back for more. Above is a photo of a relatively new KitKat variant called "KitKat Lucky Little(s)." Instead of the regular KitKat fingers, this pack contains poppable nibbles.
The new shape would have been enough of an adventure for most brands—but not for KitKat Japan. They've colored the mini wafers in pink and white chocolate to mimic the shades of blooming cherry blossoms, an image that carries several layers of meaning, especially for the main target—Japanese students. (Why students and why cherry blossoms? That's a topic for another day.)
But the KitKat team didn't stop with new format and colors. They've also built a game into the product. The on-package copy encourages you to count the pieces inside to find how many are white, and how many are pink. Then you can go to the brand website and type the results into a window that tells you your fortune based on the color proportions.
This is exactly the kind of smart thinking that creates buzz, encourages repeat purchase, and strengthens the branding by linking the game to the product name. Brilliant.
I can just see gaggles of students all over Japan buying these packs daily and then accessing the site through their cell phones—while Nestle Japan happily counts its ever-growing profits.