In July 2012, Lay’s chips Launched their “Do Us A Flavor” contest, inviting consumers to submit ideas for new flavors for Lay’s chips (crisps). The winner of the contest will be awarded $1 million or one percent of their flavor’s 2013 net sales.
The competition was launched via Facebook, garnering over 3.8 million entries. Lay’s flavor development team narrowed these to a shortlist of 20, and Chefs prepared the dishes which the flavors were based on. Food scientists then translated those food notes into a spice blend for the chips.
Flavors were judged by a celebrity panel that included chef Michael Symon and actress Eva Longoria. The three final contenders were announced Monday on “Good Morning America”: Cheesy Garlic Bread, Chicken & Waffles, and Sriracha (a Thai hot-sauce).
These three were also rolled out in store this week. Consumers can vote for their favorite flavor on the Lay’s Facebook page, via twitter and by text though May 4 when the final winner will be announced. The winning flavor will then remain on shelves.
“Do Us a Flavour” was originally a hugely successful concept from Walker’s Crisps in the UK – where “Builders Breakfast” beat out “Onion Bhaji” and ”Fish and Chips” for the top slot.
The Internet has given customers ever-increasing powers to research, compare, and review brands, enabling both good and bad customer experiences to be broadcast to the world. This is proving challenging for many companies, who’ve always exercised so much control over their brand messages.
But many brands are harnessing the power of the Internet and “social proof” by optimizing user-generated content (UGC). These are the brands that understand the power of co-creating their brand together with consumers and tapping into the creativity of their fans.