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MoonPie launched an Alexa skill that provides company and conversation during the quarantine

US-based snack brand MoonPie launched MoonPie MoonMate: an Alexa skill that provides company and conversation for individuals quarantining alone during the coronavirus crisis. After being activated via voice command, the ‘virtual roommate’ can converse with users, offering facts and recipes from the brand, but also commenting on the weather, the challenges posed by lockdown living and complimenting outfits. If asked, the MoonMate will also contribute towards ‘rent’ – in the form of a code that can be used to redeem a free MoonPie item with the purchase of another one.

MoonPie’s MoonMate is a refreshingly out-of-the-box (out-of-this-planet!) response to the pandemic. Especially when seemingly every COVID brand campaign is somber...and basically the same ad. MoonMate — along with the Getty Museum’s Twitter art challenge, and the Sound Bored app that plays ambient office noises — stands out by tapping into our desires for delight and fun.

Also, consider this: Usually, a campaign is a means of letting consumers know the value of your products or services. Or collecting PR points. Instead, could your next advertising effort in and of itself offer something of value? Yes, MoonMate does drive purchases of the MoonPie snack with its ‘rent’ contribution. But that’s just one facet of the campaign. It additionally provides humor, relief...and, in turn, real health benefits. The MoonPie team was inspired by a Mayo Clinic article showing how laughter can ease anxiety and boost immunity; as the brand’s CCO explained, "It was the reassurance we needed that MoonPie’s voice had a purpose and role in helping people through social distancing.” Could you create a campaign that customers can continually engage with, and truly benefit from?

Stay healthy,

The TrendWatching content team