HACKETTSTOWN, N.J., March 3, 2016 /PRNewswire/ -- M&M'S® Milk Chocolate Candies are the people's chocolate. Since March 3, 1941, it is the fans who have made M&M'S the most popular chocolate candies on earth. To celebrate their anniversary, M&M'S is bringing the celebration to their fans - all year long.
"For 75 years, our fans have made M&M'S the iconic and beloved chocolate brand it is today," said Berta de Pablos-Barbier, Vice President, Marketing, Mars Chocolate North America. "We aren't satisfied with solely looking back on our history as America's favorite chocolate candies. We are looking to the next 75 years of innovation and transformation to engage, entice and excite consumers of today and tomorrow."
A birthday celebration wouldn't be complete without the guest of honor – and for M&M'S, that's the fans! From weddings to birthdays and all occasions in between, M&M'S fans already celebrate with the brand every day. However, in 2016, M&M'S is taking the celebration up a notch with the launch of the largest marketing campaign in the brand's history: "Celebrate with M." The campaign will feature star-studded events, product innovation, iconic collaborations and unexpected partnerships that will cement the brand's place in pop culture history.
Kicking off on February 29, fans can get in on the action by following the #CelebratewithM hashtag and M&M'S social media pages for epic birthday surprises, exclusive access to one-of-a-kind experiences, the ability to determine the next M&M'S flavor to hit store shelves and more.
Putting a Modern Twist on a Classic
This epic, year-long bash puts a modern twist on an iconic classic, with a focus on continuing to build brand awareness among millennial and Generation Z consumers. The celebration will kick-off with the release of "Candyman," a modern remake of Sammy Davis Jr.'s The Candy Man song (1972) featuring multi-platinum, Grammy® award winning artist Zedd and Grammy® nominated musician and songwriter Aloe Blacc in partnership with M&M'S.
"As an entertainer I'm inspired by the greats like Sammy Davis, Jr.," said singer Aloe Blacc. "When M&M'S approached me to partner with Zedd and put a modern spin on 'The Candy Man,' I thought it would be a perfect opportunity to bring a historic song back to life while celebrating an iconic brand and a musical legend. Our new version, "Candyman," is a musical tribute that offers a little something for every generation to groove to."
"For three-quarters of a century, M&M'S has been infusing fun, laughter and smiles into the everyday lives of millions of fans through our colorful characters and Milk Chocolate Candies," added de Pablos-Barbier. "M&M'S collaboration with Aloe Blacc and Zedd was not about creating a soundtrack for a new television spot. Rather, it's about inspiring a new generation of fans to sing along and celebrate with us. It was also our ambition to be 'digital first' as we were able to create an incredible amount of engaging content through this partnership that will enable us to be culturally relevant with millennials and Gen Z fans."
Released on Friday, February 26, "Candyman" is available for download on iTunes and streaming on Spotify. The single is accompanied by a full-length music video featuring Aloe Blacc, Zedd and M&M'S characters Red and Yellow as well as a :30 advertising spot via the Brand's YouTube channel: https://www.youtube.com/user/mmschocolate.
The Party Continues
The colorful chocolate fun doesn't stop there. In addition to the release of "Candyman," the M&M'S Brand will launch:
- Retro Packaging: #TBT wouldn't be complete without the M&M'S version of a throwback. Available on store shelves in February, the brand will release 12 retro designs (six designs each for Milk Chocolate and Peanut inspired by the brand's 75-year heritage and history from the 1940s – 1990s). Available at retailers nationwide, consumers can get their collectible M&M'S in single and box packs starting at $1.49.
- Flavor Vote: Starting on March 1 through June 17, fans will have the chance to vote for the next limited edition M&M'S flavor to hit store shelves. Original Peanut will go head-to-head with three new M&M'S Brand Chocolate Peanut varieties – Chili Nut, Honey Nut and Coffee Nut – in a socialized consumer campaign to determine America's Favorite Peanut.
- Red Nose Day: For the second year, the M&M'S Brand will partner with NBC and Comic Relief as a title sponsor to raise awareness and money for the Red Nose Day Fund, an organization that helps to uplift children out of poverty. In 2015, the M&M'S Brand donated more than 1.3 million dollars to Red Nose Day charities.
- Operation Gratitude: To honor M&M'S origin as a military ration during World War II, Mars Chocolate, makers of M&M'S, will donate $750,000 worth of product to Operation Gratitude for inclusion in military care packages throughout 2016.
- Be@rBrick: To commemorate M&M'S 75th anniversary, M&M'S World is launching a partnership with Japanese lifestyle brand, Be@rBrick. The exclusive line will feature Be@rBrick's iconic collectible characters, apparel and accessories – all inspired by M&M'S heritage.
"As we look ahead, we hope to inspire new stories with a new generation of artists and consumers and showcase the love our fans have for M&M'S by tapping into their unique world view to bring the essence of the brand to life in new, colorful and creative ways," added de Pablos-Barbier.
About Mars, Incorporated
In 1911, Frank C. Mars made the first Mars candies in his Tacoma, Washington kitchen and established Mars' first roots as a confectionery company. In the 1920s, Forrest E. Mars, Sr. joined his father in business and together they launched the MILKY WAY® bar. In 1932, Forrest, Sr. moved to the United Kingdom with a dream of building a business based on the objective of creating a "mutuality of benefits for all stakeholders" – this objective serves as the foundation of Mars, Incorporated today. Based in McLean, Virginia, Mars has net sales of more than $33 billion, six business segments including Petcare, Chocolate, Wrigley, Food, Drinks, Symbioscience, and more than 75,000 Associates worldwide that are putting its Principles into action to make a difference for people and the planet through its performance.
Mars brands include: Petcare – PEDIGREE®, ROYAL CANIN®, WHISKAS®, BANFIELD® Pet Hospital, CESAR®, SHEBA®, DREAMIES® and NUTRO®; Chocolate – M&M'S® ®, SNICKERS®, DOVE®, GALAXY®, MARS®, MILKY WAY® and TWIX®; Wrigley – DOUBLEMINT®, EXTRA®, ORBIT® and 5™ chewing gums, SKITTLES® and STARBURST® candies, and ALTOIDS® and LIFESAVERS® mints. Food – UNCLE BEN'S®, DOLMIO®, EBLY®, MASTERFOODS®, SEEDS OF CHANGE® and ROYCO®; Drinks – ALTERRA COFFEE ROASTERS™, THE BRIGHT TEA COMPANY™, KLIX® and FLAVIA®; Symbioscience – COCOAVIA® and WISDOM PANEL®.
About Aloe Blacc
Grammy-nominated singer/songwriter Aloe Blacc released his major-label debut album Lift Your Spirit March 11th, 2014 on XIX Recordings/Interscope Records where it debuted at #4 on the Billboard Top 200 chart. The set followed up Blacc's collaboration as vocalist and co-writer on well-known DJ/producer Avicii's track "Wake Me Up," a song that hit the Top 5 on the Billboard Hot 100 and #1 on its Hot Dance Club Songs and Dance/Electronic Songs charts, as well as topping charts in more than 100 countries. Blacc's single "The Man" topped the charts with more than 2.7 million singles sold and Lift Your Spirit received a Grammy nomination for Best R&B Album. To learn more about Aloe Blacc, visit www.aloeblacc.com and follow him on Twitter (@aloeblacc).
Born Anton Zaslavski, multi-platinum, GRAMMY ® winning artist Zedd has distinguished himself by drawing from his diverse musical training and a background spanning classical to post-hardcore/metal to electro house. He creates detailed, carefully produced compositions that also appeal to audiences outside of the EDM world. The New York Times has said, "his talent is extraordinary," while Stereogum has noted: "His beats tend to sound like gorgeously engineered spacecraft that shift into warp speed at the drop, their engines overloading and threatening to disintegrate." After signing with Interscope Records in 2012, Zedd released Clarity to much critical acclaim. The title track climbed to No. 2 at Top 40 radio, went Top 10 on the Billboard Hot 100, and won a 2014 GRAMMY Award for Best Dance Recording. The video has racked up more than 157 million Vevo views, while his platinum follow-up hit "Stay The Night" (ft. Hayley Williams of Paramore) has over 132 million Vevo views and won the 2014 MTV Clubland Video Music Award. Zedd's new album True Colors debuted at #4 on the Billboard Top 200 and it's first single, "I Want You To Know," featuring Selena Gomez, hit No. 1 on Billboard's Hot Dance/Electronic Songs chart. His latest single "Beautiful Now" Ft. Jon Bellion is out now and Zedd will headline at Coachella, Ultra, Electric Daisy Carnival with more festival dates to be announced soon.
SOURCE Mars, Incorporated