think of milk
think of milk
Once upon a time, there was a tiny Swedish manufacturer of oat-based foods and drinks. They had huge ambitions and very little money. But they had important things to say, things that could help people and the planet become healthier. Also, they were fucking fearless. This is what happened.
In Sweden, milk is religion. But Oatly wanted to grow, and to do that they had to increase awareness around plant-based alternatives among the general public. They wanted to make oat milk a lifestyle choice for a conscious generation, rather than a niche product for people with allergies. Time to awaken the post-milk generation.
The only problem was that Oatly’s media budget was, to put it mildly, limited. Which is why we decided to treat the packaging as our main media channel, an advertising space in itself. So when we designed the packaging, we didn’t think about other packaging. We thought about posters. Mighty posters.
"So when we designed the packaging, we didn’t think about other packaging. We thought about posters. Mighty posters."
The unpredictable design combined with provocative thoughts such as ”Wow, no cow” and ”It’s like milk, but made for humans” caused the milk industry to choke on their own products. They decided to sue Oatly for…speaking the truth.
Oatly said thank you, and put the whole lawsuit online so everyone could read it. This generated massive support from the public, who saw the milk industry as an oversized bully.
Through an incredibly close collaboration with the client, the Oatly movement spread through magazines, outdoor posters, music festivals, 30 commercials with CEO Toni (sometimes half- naked, sometimes singing his own song in an oat field, sometimes cooking with his mom) and many other initiatives. All of them made Oatly feel less like a corporation and more like a collection of real people.
The rest is history.
Results: 70x increase in demand – entire concept of milk has changed
Within six months of the rebranding, Oatly saw a 50% increase in sales. Four years later, there was 70x demand growth. Today, the entire concept of milk has changed and the movement is continuing to spread across the planet. And while oat milk doesn’t solve the climate crisis, at least it makes a small contribution to the hope of living happily ever after.
Oatly is taking over the world, and people are giving up milk in record numbers. Just think about it – it is almost impossible to buy a latte these days without having to specify what kind of milk should go in it!