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Posted by Parveen Dhupar on October 26, 2016

BTI Brand Innovations wins the Marketing Effectiveness - Platinum Award at the 2016 Summit International Awards for Mary Macleod’s ‘What Cookie are You Today?’ campaign. This recognition is awarded to work which has influenced, changed, or reinforced the target audience's knowledge, attitudes or beliefs.

With over 1,100 entries submitted from 14 countries, in this year’s competition, only 6% of the submissions were awarded. A proud moment for BTI!

The complete Mary Macleod’s ‘What Cookie are You Today?’ campaign is a great example of BTI’s strategic and creative expertise. At BTI, we believe in diagnosing the issues that the brand is facing and then providing a solution that resonates with the consumer.

Here is a glimpse of the campaign which brought us this well-deserved victory!

The Brief

The objective of the brief received from Mary Macleod’s Shortbread, a Toronto-based cookie store, was to expand their consumer base across the GTA and help them grow the brand. While analyzing the brief, we found several other challenges that were interfering with their growth.

  1. Being a premium product - The purchasing behaviour of consumers showed a pattern of gifting more than personal consumption
  2. Occasion-based purchases - Sales were dipping in non-holiday seasons
  3. Cookies vs. shortbread - Consumers looking for cheaper options would instead purchase regular cookies
  4. Health conscious attitudes on the rise – A demand for healthier and local foods dominated the mindset of consumers


The cookie category was becoming increasingly difficult to remain profitable in for small store operations, because of the growing competition and changing consumption patterns. With deep pockets, multiple stores and diverse distribution, the shortbread cookie category in Canada is fiercely driven, with brands like; Walkers, Mrs. Fields, Cookie It Up, Godiva, and Lindt. The brand also faced competition from established brands with more mainstream cookie products, such as Chips Ahoy and Oreo, for personal consumption, but not gift purchases.

Our first step in coming up with a campaign idea was to zero down on our target audience. After understanding the purchase and consumption behaviour in the category, we sketched out a profile of our target: Female, 20+ years old, who have just entered the workforce, or are mothers. The profile was segregated into 2 parts:

  • Socially Connected: Socially active, self-confident and independent, yet, seeks reassurance from friends and family when it comes to making purchases. She remains digitally connected with friends and family, for advice and opinions, via text, phone, and social media. She uses social media to share life stories and achievements (both significant and trivial). She also uses brand websites and social pages to support brands she loves, to receive regular updates, coupons or discounts, and to research things like pricing and nutritional information before making a purchase.
  • Internet Savvy: Canadians spend an average of 36.3 hours browsing, and visit approximately 80 websites in one month’s time.


With the source of revenue coming from only one boutique retail location, the campaign had to be planned and executed on a shoestring budget. At BTI Brand Innovations we have always believed that a big budget is not the only driver of an effective marketing campaign.

We developed a strategic direction that was clear and targeted. With limited entry points into the household, our first step was to befriend the woman of the house and give her a reason to purchase Mary Macleod’s shortbread cookies apart from gifting.

We based our complete campaign on the insight that our target audience wants to stand out from the crowd and be unique. From their fashion sense to home decor, they are looking to express their individuality and unique character.


From that, we came up with the idea ‘What Cookie Are You Today?’ - a quiz tool that displayed simplicity in diversity! A contest was created to discover and celebrate each consumer’s personality traits, and show how consumers’ personalities are mirrored by our cookie flavours.



The objectives were clear, that the development of this engagement platform needed to:

  1. Drive engagement (Build top-of-mind awareness)
  2. Collect qualified leads
  3. Drive sales throughout the calendar year and not just the holiday season
  4. Bring change to the consumption pattern - from gifting to personal consumption
  5. Generate trials by appealing to new consumer base

The contest was strategically promoted to drive best results. It was launched on a digital platform as a microsite and was supported by in-store POP to drive traffic.


Phase 1 ended early this year with jaw-dropping results, as the campaign drove a high level of engagement. The total contest entries increased by whopping 155% and the number of unique entries increased by 68.54% from the period between Q1 to Q4.

The contest was so interactive that individuals with multiple entries grew by 53% between the above said period.

Referrals were one of the main objectives of this campaign and the results were staggering. The total number of referrals throughout the contest was 870, and the unique CASL opt-ins grew by 94%.

The contest didn’t only engage with the audience but also left them with a sweet taste. The coupon redemptions increased 792% with revenue from coupon redemption growing by 1243% (Net Shipping).

Looking at the success of phase 1, the Mary Macleod's team has launched Phase 2 of the campaign for the month of October 2016, and it has shown promising results, recieving over 8500 entries in the first 3 weeks!

The award and the success of this campaign validated BTI’s expertise in creating an effective marketing campaign, irrespective of budgets and its client's scale of operations.

Now that’s how you become a Shortbread in a cookie cutter world!

Challenge BTI with the opportunity to evaluate your needs, and develop creative strategies that work!