Viral case study: Purina gets puppy love with Buzzfeed powered campaign

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In July 2015, Pet food brand Purina teamed up with Buzzfeed to show the unbreakable bond between man and puppy, earning 8 million YouTube views with a strong story-telling campaign.

Case study summary

• Pet brand uses digital channels to create long-form video in move away from traditional 30-second TV commercial format

• Strong, funny story telling combined with cute animal proves hit on web

• Video links to site that offers tips for puppy owned to add value to experience

• Overall, video attracts 8 million views on YouTube

The challenge

Purina wanted to take a different approach to the traditional dog food commercial, using a long form YouTube story telling format to create brand (and puppy) love.

The solution

Shot inexpensively with an improv-heavy style, the spot follows a mustachioed protagonist learning to love his new puppy that he finds at the pet shop.

At the heart of the campaign is a 3.5 minute short film featuring a man who adopts a Cavalier King Charles Spaniel puppy.

King Charles becomes Queen Charles before picking up the name Chloe.

Chloe learns all about soccer practice, playing the piano, 1980s music, bathroom privacy and the value of miniature landscapes.


The video linked to a 'Puppyhood' site that tracked the growing relationship between the loveable pair, along with puppy training and ownership tips. .

The result

Overall, the YouTube ad was viewed 8 million timess on YouTube. Puppyhood’ succeeds because it doesn’t feel like an ad. Instead it feels like a funny video you’d send to a particularly puppy-happy friend.

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