DDB China speeds up advertising for Gen Z

A new iteration of Skittles ‘Taste the Rainbow’ campaign pays heed to shorter attention spans in China where younger audiences pay money to skip ads, communicate in acronyms, and watch summaries of movies.

Among generation Z, it has become the norm to browse content at twice the speed. They are a tough target market for brands looking for airtime among a younger audience in China.

Launched on Douyin, the star of Skittles’ first-ever sped-up advertisement races through his dialogue at 32 times the speed of a regular ad which inevitably leaves an awkward pause at the end of the slot (see dialogue below). In keeping with Skittles’ mission to elicit curiosity about the world, the ad begs the question: If we do everything faster, how will we spend the time saved?

Proving the power of knowing your audience, the ad raked in more than 150 million views and positive reviews within ten days of its launch. Fans praised the ad for saving them time, and many shared that they not only finished watching the ad but also replayed it numerous times.

The campaign follows Skittles’ hugely successful ‘Acronym the Rainbow’ initiative featuring a viral video comprised entirely of people speaking in acronyms. The video, which hit the coveted Bilibili ‘Hot 100 Chart’ twice, set off a wave of real-time comments and user-generated content among China’s generation Z to drive sales growth and uplift in penetration across the country.

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