This Toothpaste Startup’s Cheeky Activation Will Have You Gleefully Spitting In Public

Fresh breath from Hello is a scooter away

Say hello (pun intended) to fresh breath. Hello
Headshot of T.L. Stanley

Emily Post would have zero tolerance on the matter, but in general, social etiquette suggests that there are some routine body-maintenance rituals you should never perform in public, like clipping your nails and, certainly, brushing your teeth.

A brand called Hello is tackling the latter, but with a dose of humor, a modicum of privacy and a perfectly cheeky digital campaign.

The startup, one of several disruptors in the oral health category, has partnered with Humanaut for Spyt, a mobile mouth-care service that brings everything including the bathroom sink to your location so you can freshen your breath and whiten your teeth on the spot.

If you participate, you’ll still be spitting on the sidewalk, or in a parking lot, or outside a club, but there’s a screen between you and unwitting passersby, who can hear but can’t actually see the deed.

In its first work for the young brand, Humanaut mounted tile-lined sinks onto the back of a fleet of electric scooters. Inside that sky-blue box is everything you need (toothbrushes, toothpaste, mouthwash and floss), promoting Hello’s natural ingredients like farm-grown mint, activated charcoal, tea tree oil and aloe vera.

“We wanted to catapult Hello even further ahead of the competition by innovating the entire brushing experience and reaching our audience with a more modern media vehicle, literally,” says David Littlejohn, Humanaut’s chief creative director.

In theory or in the wrong hands, the whole promo could’ve easily gone off the rails, sinking into a gross public spectacle. But Humanaut’s 90-second hero video, along with its cut downs, strikes just the right self-aware tone. (Hats off, also, to the friendly, imperturbable product pitchman).

The stunt debuted last week in an invite-only test with influencers, employees and current fans in New York City, coinciding with an out-of-home campaign for the brand, mostly with subway ads. (Tagline: “The future of brushing”). Digital ads are appearing on YouTube, Facebook, Instagram and Hulu.

The agency designed the whole Spyt experience (scooters, uniform, logo), which will roll out to other cities and festival destinations through the summer. (Get on the Spyt waitlist at Hello, a direct-to-consumer brand also sells via retailers like Target, Whole Foods, Walmart and CVS.


Client: Hello
Agency: Humanaut
Campaign Title: The Future of Brushing

Chief Creative Director: David Littlejohn
Chief Strategy Officer: Andrew Clark
Creative Director: Nathan Dills
Director of Content: Dan Jacobs
Director of Production: Tommy Wilson
Creative Producer: Maggie Baynham
Copywriter: Nathan Dills, Trey Tyler,  Austin Howe
Art Director: Bethany Maxfield, Steven Preisman
Senior Designer: Jen Rezac
Designer: Coleson Amon

Production Company: Humanaut
Director: Barlow Jacobs
Producer: Alvaro Donado
Director of Photography: Andrew Barrera
Motion Graphics: Victor Tyler

Post Production: Fancy Rhino
Editor: Tyler Beasley
Color: Annie Huntington

@TLStanleyLA T.L. Stanley is a senior editor at Adweek, where she specializes in consumer trends, cannabis marketing, meat alternatives, pop culture, challenger brands and creativity.
Publish date: May 21, 2019 © 2020 Adweek, LLC. - All Rights Reserved and NOT FOR REPRINT