Kelly Scott Madison

Awards won:

2017 North American Effies Bronze win in the "David vs. Goliath" and "Snacks and Desserts" categories.


Confections, Non-Chocolate Candy


Expanding brand perception, especially among key millennial consumers.


Trolli is famous for inventing the gummy worm (including its Trolli Sour Brite Crawlers) and is a “weirdly awesome” American favorite for gummy candies. Trolli identified millennial consumers as a target demographic and wanted to expand upon their “weirdly awesome” perception in order to become a leader in the competitive non-chocolate candy industry. 


  • Trolli needed to better understand its millennial audience and subgroups in order to engage with the various lifestyles and psychographics present among this large age range. 

  • The non-chocolate candy industry is extremely competitive and impulse-based, requiring a unique media effort to break through the noise.

Strategic Approach:

Through initial research, KSM determined that Trolli needed to segment its millennial target audience in order to better engage with various sentiments and psychographics present among this large age range. Thus, the audience was divided into two distinct groups: “Leading Millennials” (persons 18 to 24) and “Trailing Millennials” (persons 13 to 17). Analyzing where their media habits differ and converge led KSM to identify that high-impact sponsorships, video, and social executions were going to be essential to breaking through the competitive noise, and deploying a truly unique media effort that Trolli’s challengers couldn’t dream of pulling off. 

Strategic Approach Cont'd:

Key elements of the media plan included: 

• Creating a custom cross-platform video strategy, utilizing both direct response television and major online video sources. This baseline provided foundational awareness for the entire target.

• Partnering with NBCUniversal to create a custom event activation at Comic-Con International: San Diego, including an on-air tie-in through Syfy, and a costume contest with a street team, professional photographers and product sampling. Content was generated for an online contest, and Trolli segments were aired in the first-ever “Live from Comic-Con” show hosted by Will Arnett. KSM arranged for both Trolli and Syfy to use custom hashtags on social media channels that encouraged participation.

• Consistent social media support, including paid support over all major social networks, the targeting and boosting of social influencers talking about the brand, and creating custom social activations within key platforms like Snapchat, which combined Trolli’s NBA spokesperson James Harden with exclusive NBA content. KSM also created custom social extensions and posts with 120 Sports, highlighting the most “weirdly awesome” sports plays each week.

• Negotiating added value whenever possible. Comic-Con event activations were secured as added value over top of our larger cross-platform spend with NBCUniversal. It included upgraded premium items given away by the event street team and an increase in the size of Trolli’s street team. Bonus impressions, social extensions and brand studies were also negotiated as added value across all digital platforms, including a third-party brand study on Snapchat to verify campaign effectiveness. 


By creating a custom reporting dashboard, KSM was able to track goals such as brand performance, media performance, and sales metrics, which lead to easy identification of trends and verification of media effects over time and across channels. Additionally, we created a topline tracker to monitor key performance indicators. It used overall brand study metrics and individual performance by partner in order to efficiently track monthly and overall performance, allowing for real-time optimizations.
By the end of the campaign, year-over-year product consumption increased 8.1 percent, and unaided awareness of Trolli doubled. 

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