Actimel moment marketing: Helping users stay strong via YouTube

January 2017

Actimel, the drinkable yogurt product from Danone, has traditionally been best known for boosting immunity. However, the company wanted to rebrand with a new focus on strength and resilience. “Stay Strong" messaging was created to promote the idea that Actimel provides a positive boost for getting through life’s tough moments.


Adapted TV commercials and created new videos for YouTube

Tested various edits in Spain, Portugal, Poland and France

Used Brand Lift and interest measurement solutions to gather metrics

Applied programmatic techniques to play TrueView videos during key daily moments


Shift from functional to emotional brand messaging


74% average completion rate

Adapted-for-YouTube edits of TV spots produced up to 33% higher view-through rates than original TV commercials

Made-for-YouTube content increased brand consideration by up to 680%

Transitioning the brand's perception from a purely functional one into an emotional one embodied a two-fold challenge: connecting with existing consumers around the key message, and generating awareness around the new positioning to an audience of users younger than the traditional Actimel consumer.

To address these challenges, Actimel designed a two-part strategy. First, the brand launched a large traditional awareness campaign involving two TV ads. Alongside this, Actimel created the Stay Strong Brothers band, with music videos hosted on YouTube as hub content.

Working with Young & Rubicam and Google, Actimel adapted its TV advertising for YouTube TrueView, an ad format that allows people to choose if they want to watch or skip an ad. Google’s Unskippable Lab enabled the team to see how the two TV ads could be edited so that users would be more likely to watch – and not skip – the videos.

The team tested different types of content on YouTube in Spain, Portugal, Poland and France: the original TV commercials, several edits adapted for YouTube and some original videos made specifically for the platform. Google's Brand Lift and interest measurement solutions made it possible to gather metrics like ad recall and brand interest for all of the videos, which helped produce an understanding of which edits delivered the most impact.

Meanwhile, original content featuring the Stay Strong Brothers band was created to drive the "Stay Strong" message home through signals-based targeting. Actimel used programmatic techniques to play more than 100 TrueView videos during key daily moments when people were likely to need a boost of resilience.

Adapting the marketing for an online audience and taking a moments-based approach paid off. The campaign videos had an average completion rate of 74%. The adapted-for-YouTube edits produced up to 33% higher view-through rates than the when the regular TV commercials were shown on the platform, and the made-for-YouTube content increased brand consideration by up to 680%. The conclusion for Actimel? Going forward, the brand plans to leverage both content that has been adapted for YouTube as well as made-for-YouTube content to ensure the most effective online video strategy.

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