Why Just Eat waited five weeks to unleash its Snoop Dogg campaign

Time is right for some light-heartedness, CMO said.

Just Eat: food-based lyrics written by Snoop Dogg
Just Eat: food-based lyrics written by Snoop Dogg

A dreary social climate has been met with an onslaught of poorly drawn rainbows, embodying the old adage that you can have too much of a good thing.

However, as the public looks forward to a semblance of normalcy, Just Eat is seeking to added some much-needed humour to the mix as it steps up its existing "Did somebody say Just Eat" global campaign.

Earlier this week, the brand released a teaser starring none other than Snoop Dogg. And now the full ad is here.

Created by McCann London, the spot shows Snoop as he vents about the Just Eat jingle, prompting him to get in touch with the brand and create his own version.

The Gin and Juice rapper proceeds to profess his love for "oodles of noodles" and ordering "tacos to the chateau", sampling the jingle along the way.

Launching today (7 May) alongside social media and radio activity, the work was directed by Françcois Rousselet through Riff Raff.

Just Eat first unveiled its "‘Did somebody say Just Eat" jingle in May 2019, marking the brand’s third year of sponsoring The X Factor on ITV.

Susan O’Brien, chief marketing officer at Just Eat, explained that the addition of Snoop is an attempt to "tap into a younger, more urban, cooler, independent demographic", hailing the singer as a "desirable no-brainer" for his talent and passion for food (the rapper also has his own cookbook, by the way).

"We feel that the time is right for some light-heartedness via this wonderful world of food," O’Brien told Campaign.

She said Just Eat has kept this campaign on the backburner for "four or five weeks", but now "the mood of the nation is ripe" for some quality Snoop-related content.

O'Brien explained: "Every week, we've looked at whether it's the right week to go live and we've had strategic conversations with all of our partners and indeed McCann, as well as looking at the core business.

"In some of our markets, we've had half of our restaurant partners where they've had to go offline because they can't get staff. That hasn't been the case in the UK, and slowly but surely the confidence has come back, so we believe that this is absolutely the right time." 

As the coronavirus pandemic began to reap havoc in the West, Just Eat opted to park the latest ad in order to support ITV’s "Britain get talking" campaign, with the brand rolling out a 25% discount for NHS workers.

Now, with an optimistic change in tone comes social-savvy methods of connecting with a younger audience – including collaborations with TikTok influencers, the launch of Instagram stickers and singalong karaoke – alongside more traditional TV ads.

On the newly remixed Just Eat jingle, Thomas Smith, managing partner at McCann, said: "We wanted to be self-aware about that and acknowledge that some people found it annoying, but some people loved it. 

"Now that we're in culture – we've kind of earned our place with the first round of the campaign – we want to execute within culture, and that's where someone who's as self-aware and as commercially minded as Snoop is perfect to play the conceit that he'd seen [the ad], which ties in with this day and age of kind of memes and meta ways of thinking."

Yesterday (Wednesday), ITV announced its revenue dropped by a "brutal" 42% last month, reflecting the impact of Covid-19 is having on TV advertising. However, Rob Doubal, chief creative officer at McCann, maintained that "whether the ad is watched on TV or not is actually neither here nor there".

"When you produce TV, you're producing video randomly anyway," he said. "So I think Just Eat is quite good for occasion-based viewing and also gives part of that meta story of Snoop doing a TV ad – it can be cut and evolved on all the other channels.

Doubal continued: "The TV ad is our core asset, but there's a lot of cross pollination of content, so the ad will be seen in many different places."

Coincidentally, the campaign was unveiled just one day after ITV announced that this summer's Love Island will not be going ahead, drastically reducing the TV presence for Just Eat, which is a major sponsor of the reality show. 

Earlier this year, Just Eat invited driver Derek into the islands for a series of idents, which aired during the show’s sixth season.

"We're all disappointed, but [cancelling Love Island] is the right and sensible thing to do," O’Brien said.

"We look forward to rekindling that as and when, but we're absolutely committed to supporting Love Island as an iconic bit of content that gets created and sits in our strategic approach to marketing and the audiences that we want to try and tap into, which is why we're sponsoring in the first place. 

"Disappointed, expected, but let's see what the future brings."