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Humanaut Deploys Culinary Influencers, Tongue-In-Cheek "Censorship" To Explain What Ghee Is

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Robert Goldrich
Friday, Jun. 29, 2018

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Chattanooga-based ad agency Humanaut has launched a digital campaign to introduce Organic Valley’s Ghee, a clarified butter product that is lactose-free, high in fat and has a higher smoke point than traditional cooking oils. It is rapidly gaining popularity in both the paleo and general cooking communities. But awareness is still low, and many people don’t know how to use it.

The cheeky ads leverage YouTube cooking influencers to demonstrate how easy it is to substitute Ghee for other oils. Any time the chef uses the word oil or butter, it is abruptly censored with a loud, bleep-like “gheeeeee!” A spokeswoman explains, “And that’s how you use Ghee, silly!”

“Ghee-lish Any Dish” videos, including this anthem piece (directed by Humanaut’s director of content Dan Jacobs via Humanaut Productions), debuted June 26 on YouTube, Facebook and Instagram, and as programmatic digital on popular site like People, Refinery29, Buzzfeed,  NY Times, Vanity Fair, The New Yorker, TIME, Pop Sugar, as well as on premium food and home sites like Bon Appetit, Epicurious, Food Network, Serious Eats, HGTV and The Daily Meal. Additionally, the existing audiences of featured influencers will help push the content. 

Ghee is traditionally used in Indian food and is known for its deep, rich flavor, but its high-heat performance makes it perfect for any kind of cooking or baking. The problem is, few recipes list ghee  as an ingredient.

“The number one reason people don’t buy ghee is they don’t know what to do with it. But all you  need to do is use it in place of any cooking oil or butter,” Humanaut founder and chief creative officer David Littlejohn explained. “Instead of making new content, we realized we could reuse all this existing online cooking footage to show people how they could substitute Ghee in pretty much any recipe.”

The campaign consists of 17 different executions and features 10 cooking influencers getting their recipes “Ghee-lished.” In a one-minute hero, 30-second edit and several cut downs, foodies will appreciate appearances from Food Network’s Katie Lee and a vibrant cast of culinary Youtubers including Donal Skehan, Kent Rollins, Momma Cherri, Billy Parisi, Darius Williams and Alyssa Gagarin.

Each of the influencers gets their own dedicated commercial. On the week of July 9, the chefs will begin posting their videos on their respective social platforms—where they have the highest reach and dedicated followers. Campaign elements will run through end of December.

Humanaut worked closely with their NYC-based media partner Junction 37 on the unique influencer strategy. “We’re always looking for ways to challenge the way the media channel behaves,” explained Littlejohn. “Influencers are usually creating their own new content for brands, in this case we’re leveraging the value of the influencers’ back-catalogue and editing the footage ourselves. It’s a win-win for everyone.”

Credits

Client Organic Valley Agency Humanaut, Chattanooga, Tenn. David Littlejohn, chief creative officer; Dan Jacobs, director of content; Andy Pearson, creative director, copywriter; Liza Behles, copywriter; Carrie Waren, Coleson Amon, designers; Tommy Wilson, sr. integrated producer; Andrew Clark, chief strategist. Production Humanaut Productions Dan Jacobs, director; Tommy Wilson, producer; Fritsl Butler, associate producer; John Matysiak, DP; Carrie Warren, art director. Editorial Steven Wilson, editor Color Matt Hadley, colorist.

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