It’s the beginning of the road for a new line of plant-based ice creams called Scoops from subscription meal service Daily Harvest, which is celebrating the occasion with a campaign heavy on nostalgia for an era of music, but also warm summer months we’ll all experience a little differently this year.
At its center is Boyz II Men, one of the best-selling R&B groups of all time with 64 million albums sold and a slew of ‘90s classics including “End of the Road,” “Motownphilly,” “I’ll Make Love to You” and “One Sweet Day.”
In a vertical video posted last week, members Nathan Morris, Wanya Morris and Shawn Stockman prove they’ve still got it—and still coordinate outfits—although it’s a little jarring to see gray in their beards.
“I want you / you’re so yummy / and lovely and dreamy,” they croon in a socially distanced outdoor serenade to flavors like Chocolate + Ooey, Gooey Midnight Fudge and Vanilla + Salted Swirled Black Sesame, much like they sang to Kim Fields and Lark Voorhies in the music video for 1994’s “On Bended Knee.”
To promote the collaboration (and, of course, the ice cream), Daily Harvest is leaning hard into digital assets that combine nostalgia with platforms that are distinctly of the moment, such as six downloadable Zoom backgrounds featuring said ice cream and a “mixtape,” which is actually a playlist called Scoops: A Summertime Vibe on Spotify.
To increase engagement, Daily Harvest was planning to host a Zoom concert and Q&A with Boyz II Men for 250 fans on June 2. It has since been postponed as Boyz II Men observes Blackout Tuesday alongside the music industry.
(To enter for a chance to attend, the brand was asking fans to create a lip-sync battle video to the new song using the Scoops Instagram filter. It wasn’t immediately clear how many have entered, but a post about the video has about 16,000 views as of Monday morning.)
Daily Harvest said the song celebrates the gluten- and dairy-free ice cream and “all the summertime vibes.”
And while the brand may indeed be correct that “a little throwback is just what we need,” nostalgia is also a powerful marketing tool—especially in uncertain times.
Look no further than the two-week-only collaboration between designer Lisa Frank and Hotels.com last October, which reportedly sold out in an hour. Or Bill Murray’s return as Pittsburgh weather reporter Phil Connors in Jeep’s Groundhog Day Super Bowl spot, which topped both Adweek’s list of the 10 Best Super Bowl Ads of 2020 and USA Today’s annual Ad Meter. Even denim brand Jordache is hoping for a revival on Walmart.com as online shopping surges.
Boyz II Men probably know this, too, by now.
Update: This story has been updated to reflect the postponement of the Zoom concert.
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