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Oatmeal Crisp calls on men to one-up their breakfast


From scaling mountains to battling it out in the UFC, men will go to great lengths to outdo each other, and now they can add cereal to that list.

“One-Upmanship,” a new campaign from General Mills’ Oatmeal Crisp brand is targeting men by tapping into the age-old ritual of one-upmanship, described by the brand as “the lifeblood of being a man.”

The effort, developed by the brand’s creative agency Cossette, is anchored by an animated spot which takes the viewer on a lighthearted journey throughout the history of one-upmanship; the invention of the wheel in prehistoric days, showing up golf buddies with a fancy oversized driver, and scaling higher and higher mountains.

The spot, which is running in various lengths across both English and French Canada on TV and online, also introduces a character portrayed as the inventor of the Oatmeal Crisp. By adding real berries, oat flakes and nuts, his creation has effectively one-upped other cereals, which plays into the campaign’s tagline, “One Up Your Bowl.”

According to Emma Eriksson, director of marketing, cereal, at General Mills, creative was inspired by actual male Oatmeal Crisp fans who endeavour to be a cut above the rest.

“We talked to a lot of Oatmeal Crisp consumers, and in general the thing that comes across as the champion of the brand is that they’re looking for that little bit extra in life…they’re striving for a little bit above,” Eriksson said. “We wanted something that felt fresh and interesting and hadn’t been done a million times before, where we could go crazy and tell this interesting story about the history of one-upmanship.”

Described by Eriksson as the “ultimate taste cereal,” Oatmeal Crisp comes in four flavors: Maple Nut, Triple Berry and Almond as well as the newly-launched Dark Chocolate Cranberry. What makes it the perfect cereal for men, she explained, is its crunchy, robust nature, hearty ingredients, and its dynamic flavour. Though the brand has always skewed to adults, this is the first time it has gone after a male audience, a demographic Eriksson says has been neglected in the cereal space.

“We think it’s a great fit with what men like in cereal,” Eriksson said. “It’s a very hearty, crunchy eat, and the flavour is awesome. A lot of our cereals skew a little more female, but this one is skewing more male. Within cereal in general, we don’t feel like a lot of manufactures have really spoken to men, and they love cereal… we felt that in our portfolio, this was a brand that really fit with a male audience.”

“One-Upmanship” will run for a year.
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