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Skittles Opens Itself Up to a Rainbow of Possibilities

By March 2, 2009News, Social Media

skittles

First we had Brangelina, then Zanessa…and now, Twittles.

In what’s being described as everything from brilliant to idiotic, bold to ridiculous and a logistical nightmare to a goldmine, Skittles moved its ‘usual’ website information into a 3 x 3″ floating box and has made its entire site a Twitter search page.

Did you get that?

When you go to skittles.com, what you see is a live Twitter search results page – the term being searched, of course, is ‘skittles.’ Off to the side, in a bright, red box, you can search into their ‘regular’ site with a seemingly standard navigation…or so you might think.

Their ‘friends’ page takes you to their Facebook page. Their ‘products’ pages go to Wikipedia (which the wiki notes sounds like an ad and not an article). The ‘media’ page, of course, goes to their YouTube channel. And, while the Twitter search page is set up as the ‘home’ page, it serves double-time as their ‘chatter’ page.

I’ve got to say that I’m leaning towards brilliant here. Though I feel terrible for their copywriter – s/he just lost their job. The site will be forever changing and current. It certainly embraces social media. And it has many people talking – and I can’t remember the last time I even thought about Skittles – now they’re everywhere.

Too far over the rainbow?

But, people are wondering it they’ve lost their marbles. Skittles is candy, after all. And they’re marketing is hell-bent on destroying the minds and bodies of children everywhere. So now, if a child goes to the Skittles site, they can see all of the fun that the Twitter community is having by way of posting obnoxious tweets – just to see them appear on the Skittles website.

For instance, someone tweeted recently: Just opened a bag of Skittles and all I found was cat vomit. (or something like that) I’m not thrilled with how some folks are acting – but Skittles has given up anything that even remotely looks like control here…

Perhaps, when the brouhaha dies down, this idea will be a great tool – to show the world what the current Skittles buzz is in real time. It’s like Skittles’ own brand listening page. They sure are diving head first into the transparency pool.

I’m still wondering how they got away with making a candy that looks eerily similar to the M&M.

I can’t wait to hear what you think…

Join the discussion 14 Comments

  • Liz says:

    Interesting move . . . I’m wondering why on earth they didn’t just make it a window on their site? Someone on their PR staff loves twitter big time.

  • oh amanda says:

    It’s brave, I guess. But also kinda weird. Don’t you think after this initial push, the twittering on skittles will die down? I mean, how often to people twitter about skittles?

  • Julie Roads says:

    Liz – because they’ve made the biggest social media sites into their entire site. Read closely – it’s not just about Twitter, but Facebook, Youtube…

    Oh Amanda – I’m guessing that #1. They’ll still be tweeting about Skittles – so it’s still their chatter about product, events, etc., #2. They can change it if it’s not working, and #3. See my response to Liz above.

  • Karina A. says:

    Thank you so much for making it so clear to me! I was wondering why all of a sudden my twitter stream was talking about Skittles today. I think it’s a very bold move but also they should’ve done some more work instead of just pasting code for the search Twitter page. Putting some effort into it like making every new feed coming down in different colors (using technology like the one used by Twitterfall) would’ve been the bomb. Hope it works for them because I sure love to live under the rainbow (aka I like Skittles)!

  • Ari Herzog says:

    Skittles may be everywhere–but outside of Twitter, they’re nowhere.

    I’ve never visited their website before today–and I most likely never will again.

    I agree with you on the brilliance, though; you read my blog post earlier, right? :)

  • Julie Roads says:

    Ari – I hadn’t read your post – been backed up by a series of things.
    I agree though – there is something that I like on the Skittles site purely because it isn’t the same old thing. At the end of the day – I’m thoroughly amused by this. And, no, not even this could make me want to buy the vile little candies.

  • gudipudi says:

    twitter is definetly an excellent feature …but i dnt see an importance to place it on the home page with full screen

  • sean says:

    twitter is truly revolutionizing the total web. and skittle is now at its best in implementing the social media applications. skittle has taken bold step.

  • Joely Black says:

    I didn’t even know everybody talked about skittles on Twitter. What is there to say about them? Other than, of course, discussing their marketing plan using Twitter.

  • Julie Roads says:

    Exactly, Joely – that’s all there is. They’ve created the buzz – it is what it is for now. I can only imagine that they know this. They simply must.

  • Sandra Foyt says:

    I have to commend the creativity of this plan, where those of us who’ve never thought of Skittles are suddenly paying attention.

  • Some people can’t handle when a person or company decides to think outside the box or in this case “outside the candy wrapper.” I applaud companies that try new things whether or not it works. Got to throw something on the wall and see what sticks right?

  • Wendy says:

    I think it’s brave, inventive and brilliant and playful. For the people who think it’s “idiotic”… the beauty of it is it doesn’t have to be permanent. They create a hype and when they feel like going back to something more normal they can at any time.

    Even if it didn’t work, it’s admirable that someone really stepped up and said, “How can I do a campaign that embraces the current trends of the Internet and encapsulates them all into One Big Thing?” They not only did that, but they did it in a way that was 100% committed.

    Yeah, they could have kept the old web site and integrated it, but instead were REALLY gutsy and went all out. No matter how it turns out one really has to admire the commitment and creativity.

    I don’t even like Skittles, but I feel like going out and buying a bag to set on my desk to remind myself to be bold with new ideas. Batten down the hatches — it’s a cult storm. Brace for impact! :D

  • Julie Roads says:

    Wendy! I love your take on this…and Skittles just made a sale.

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