European Yakult Umbrella Communication Campaign

A new European Yakult Communication Campaign, how exciting! Please explain why this campaign is important.

Let me start by saying, a wise man once said:

" Take the obvious, add a cupful of brains, a generous pinch of imagination, a bucketful of courage and daring, stir well and bring to a boil. "

And that is exactly what we did in the project team (Mr. Osada, Florian (YEU), Reshma (YUK) and Marlies (YNL) that was tasked with the creation of the new European Yakult communication campaign (hereafter called campaign) for 2021.

The purpose of the campaign is to align all marketing communications and channels in Europe in terms of messaging and look and feel. You can say, the campaign provides a framework of agreed Yakult messaging and a roadmap how these messages can be used in specific marketing channels.

By having consistent messaging of Yakult and a uniform Yakult look and feel across all marketing channels, we create a clear Yakult signal for consumers to recognize and connect with. With the aim of increasing sales of our little bottles in Europe.

What kind of marketing activities based on the new campaign, are you currently working on?

An example of a marketing activity linked to the campaign, is the development of a new European TV commercial of Yakult. We plan to deliver the TV commercial by the end of 2020. But the overall campaign is much more than just a TV commercial.  All communication activities should be consistent in our message about Yakult, share common visuals of Yakult and use a common tone of voice. To help us in streamlining our communication activities, we are developing a toolkit that contains the following:

(1) advertising image templates (set of visuals that the Operating Companies can use in their advertising activities),
(2) a ‘mission matrix’ or roadmap where we list our missions and messages in the areas of heritage, product and science. And how these can be used in different communication channels.

The campaign  combined with the toolkit and mission matrix will help us to create a total package of materials and messages that we can use towards different audiences (consumers, scientists, health care professionals etc.) of Yakult in Europe.

Can you tell us what you hope to achieve with the new TV commercial?

The purpose of the new TV commercial is to bring in new consumers to start drinking Yakult. And encourage existing consumers to drink Yakult more often.

Image of the Yakult balloon is a visual of the mood board of the new TV commercial.

How is the TV commercial linked to other marketing, science, and PR- activities of Yakult?

All the different departments of Yakult involved in communications activities, such as the Marketing, PR, and Science departments, need to echo the creative concept of the new campaign. This so-called integrated communications approach of aligned messaging across all communication channels will generate a strong and clear message of Yakult to our consumers. In other words, the Marketing, PR and Science departments should collectively deliver a clear and uniform message of the health benefit of Yakult to consumers. With the aim of increasing sales of Yakult in Europe.

Yakult TV commercial: phase of creative development

The first step in developing an umbrella communication strategy, is to have clearly defined business objectives. The communication objectives should support the overall business objectives.

Yakult is currently in the phase of creative development of the TV commercial. This phase is situated between consumer insights and channels of communication

Image of the flying bottle of Yakult is a visual of the mood board of the new TV commercial.

How did you decide on a creative concept of the TV commercial?

t is important that the target audience of the TV commercial, being new and existing consumers, understand and connect with the message of the TV commercial. If this is the case, we are confident the TV commercial will generate new Yakult consumers. And encourage existing consumers to drink more Yakult.

Taking the foregoing into consideration, the first creative proposals of the advertising agencies were tested by a select group of consumers. The outcome of these consumer tests provided important insights as to what creative concept of the TV commercial would work best towards our target audience.

Sounds like a lot of work! We are curious what creative concept has been chosen for the TV commercial.

The creative concept of the TV commercial we decided on is summarized in the headline:

Yakult. A little bottle on a big mission.


The idea behind this creative concept is that we want to show the positivity and joy that Yakult has in its commitment to your health and wellbeing. This joy comes from our mission to contribute to the health and happiness of people around the world. And this element of joy aims to enhance the emotional connection between our consumers and Yakult.

Can you describe the script of the TV Commercial?

The TV commercial will show the actual journey and mission of the bottle starting in Japan in 1935 to present day Europe. Along the way we will show parts of our heritage, the Yakult health benefit and a drinking shot to demonstrate how tasty Yakult is.

In addition to the traditional explanation of the Yakult bacteria reaching the gut alive, we will also be reviewing how best we can explain more about the functional health benefit of Yakult. We noticed that there is an increase of attention among consumers and the media about how a healthy gut influences your brain and how you feel. Therefore, one of the ideas to bring across the health benefit of drinking Yakult is, to talk about how the gut is also considered to be your ‘second brain

When do you plan to ‘Go Live’ with the new European TV commercial?

The project team is currently working hard on all the materials.  YNL will be the first country to launch the new European TV commercial in January 2021. The other operating companies will launch the European TV commercial later in 2021. However, all operating companies will start using the new TV commercial and strategic direction in 2021.

​​​​​​​We will keep you posted on progress of the new TV commercial.

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