Flashback Friday – "Keep going and going and going" with The Energizer Bunny

The famous pink bunny that keeps going and going and going… The Energizer bunny became famous in the mid 1990s and was created in response to the already established Duracell battery campaign, which featured a group of pink bunnies all playing the drums simultaneously. Each one would quit one by one from their batteries dying, but Duracell’s would keep going.
Shortly after Energizer released the campaign, its much cooler pink bunny sporting black sunglasses quickly took the place of Duracell’s bunnies. Created by Chiat/Day to be a one time response to Duracell’s bunny campaign, the Energizer bunny quickly took off and became a pop-culture icon that would last 20 years and have over 115 different spots in English and Spanish, with new commercials debuting twice a year on average.

The market for batteries in the United States during this time had been quiet in terms of advertising, but the rise of household appliances, toys, audio players and other electronic devices that required batteries increased sales to over $2 billion. The field was highly competitive by the mid 1980s, with the largest competitors being Duracell, Eveready (now Energizer) and Rayovac. It was at this time that Eveready would launch its Energizer brand campaign that would create a lasting impact not only on the battery business but also on American popular culture as well.
But with all its success, would you have ever guessed that Duracell kept its number one spot up until the late 1990s?  So what went wrong? Unfortunately in the battery business, it’s quite a challenge to differentiate between batteries since they all look the same, not to mention they’re hidden inside the products in which they are used. So even after seeing thousands of ads, consumers still didn’t know which brand was which. They connected “bunny” to “battery” but never grasped the difference between the competing brands. Even during the campaign’s most popular time, Duracell kept its lead over Energizer. What it boils down to is when a customer goes to purchase batteries from a store they all look too much the same, perhaps they would have had more success if they made their batteries pink! It’s all about giving people something that pops out when it comes to differentiating an otherwise boring product.
Never the less, the Energizer bunny campaign has become a “symbol of longevity, perseverance and determination” says Mark Larsen, communications category manager for Energizer. In the past decade, everyone from politicians to sport stars have used the Energizer Bunny to describe their staying power.
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