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Brand of the Week: YETI

July 14 2017 by Jordan Kramer
The rugged brand you may have come across on the bed of a truck or on your last fishing trip, recently moved media agencies amidst corporate wide changes and growth. YETI, the Austin, TX based outdoor goods manufacturer expanded their product line this year and in turn, recently switched their media buying and planning over to Backbone Media from Mediavest/Spark (Publicis). The incumbent agency has handled media for YETI since 2013 in the competitive cooler category that has been heating up as other brands like RTIC, Pelican, Engel, and Igloo had stepped up their games. Pathmatics partner Winmo reports that McGarrah Jesse is still handling creative for the brand, and Backbone has functioned as their PR/earned media agency before taking over all media just in time for holiday season planning.
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Last month’s Father’s Day was a large focus for the company, known for it’s high-end coolers and other products appealing to the outdoor, hunting, fishing, rodeo and barbeque verticals. With masculine messaging and images in their creatives, the brand has increased their display presence accounting for 87% of their digital spend. Read on for highlights from YETI's recent creative campaigns, and download their entire display strategy in our new Brand of the Week Report.

Father’s Day 

What could dad want more than a cooler to store a wide array of fish, ‘cold ones,’ and hunting game? With creatives wishing a Happy Father’s Day from “our YETI dads to yours,” the brand targeted gifting sites and directed consumers to a landing page featuring their very own gift guide for dad. Towards the bottom of the landing page features a short blurb stating, “Remember that pack of socks and tie you bought your dad five years ago? Neither does he. Give pops some gifts he’ll actually use — and love — from the YETI Father’s Day gift store.” 
With the promise of making “‘dad-style’ badass again,” the uncompromising rugged brand fueled their own signature style in the entire ad journey for the consumer, from creative to landing page. YETI began running Father’s Day specific creatives a month prior to the holiday, with flight dates around May 16th, running until just before the big day. Site targets included SlickDeals, Genius.com, Newegg, Kmart, Kohl’s, and RetailMeNot.



Nothing Soft About It

While cooler sales are up nationwide, the biggest bump has come from soft coolers as interest in hard coolers has faded, according to sports industry analyst Matt Powell of the NPD Group as quoted in the Houston Chronicle. In order to show their soft side, YETI's most recent campaigns bring their soft cooler line front and center. To coincide with their strong brand identity, the ruggedness of their product-line echoes in each and every creative. The brand’s top creative for their soft coolers is a 300x600 HTML5 creative featuring a video accompanying an image of the product with the headline: “Nothing Soft About It.” Running on sites like Sport Fishing Magazine, Boating Magazine, Marlin Magazine, and Saltwater Sportsman, the creative is definitely geared to the masculine demographic.


Another creative set for YETI's soft cooler campaign features the messaging, “Opens Wider. Stays Out Longer.” alongside an image of man in a flannel shirt easily reaching into a cooler in the woods. This creative is targeted specifically to the hunting vertical, touching publishers like Outside Online and National Geographic.


For the boaters of the world, YETI used tailored their soft cooler creatives in a different way. The soft cooler sits atop a rock next to a canoe and a fishing pole, encouraging the consumer to “Throw Back Cold Ones.” Who wants to be on a boat and not have ice cold beverages to choose from? Not the YETI consumer whom the brand was trying to target on sites like Boating Magazine, Bass Master, Sport Fishing Magazine, and Saltwater Sportsman.



Built for the Wild

The popular hard cooler line from YETI is still getting some advertising love from the brand, featured in creatives touting they are “Built for the Wild.” YETI released two versions of the hard cooler creative, targeted specifically to the site the ad appeared on. 
For the hunting vertical and outdoor verticals, YETI put an illustration of the woods with a bear on their hard cooler and advertised the creative on National Geographic. 


For the fishing crowd, a similar creative with the same messaging has an image of waves across the the cooler and was targeted directly to Marlin Magazine.



See YETI's Full Display Strategy

Subscribe to the Brand of the Week to get the report on YETI's entire display strategy including how the brand is buying across device-types, which adtech partners they are utilizing, and top sites by investment. 

See YETI's Full Display Strategy

About Author
Jordan Kramer

An out-of-the-box thinker with a love for disruptive ideas, Jordan's background spans PR and events for the wedding & hospitality industry in Los Angeles and Scottsdale and also launching one of America's most unique food trucks. She jumped from the food start-up scene to the tech start-up scene in 2013 to join one of the most unique companies in ad tech. Jordan is a graduate of the University of California, Santa Barbara with a Bachelor of Arts in Communication.

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