It’s come to this… The second Hot Pockets music video in as many years, featuring Snoop Dogg parodying another vintage rap (more on last year’s “Pocket Like It’s Hot” here). For no discernible purpose besides target-market fantasy fulfillment, Kate Upton shows up. We get winking drug references: “Wanna bake with me? Then come on in/We light up taste buds.” We see loving product shots. We endure tortured, product-centric rhymes: “When that sauce heats up the pepperonis do the rest/It’s exactly why my new HOT POCKETS are the best!” And it all begins in a magical, cloud-filled world of Snoop Dogg’s Sky High Bakery…
To their credit, this consumer packaged goods marketing team has embraced what many would view as strictly taboo. Nestle brand management types refer to their brand as ‘college friendly’–a blatant marketer’s euphemism for “about as close to dinner as a gaming stoner can muster.” And they clearly know their target’s preferences. Still, it’s damn near impossible to catch lightning in a bottle twice. Three weeks in, last year’s video had a remarkable 4,240,041 views. At the same point, this new entry has a more modest 1,090,013 views. Still considerable, but not quite the same amazing breakthrough.
It’s not for lack of commitment on Mr. Dogg’s part (what happened to his “Lion” appellation?). He remains the most shameless shill of our time yet somehow, the viewing public loves him for it. To many, he’s an easygoing stoner working the corporate world for big paydays–a modern day Robin Hood if you will.
This video alone will not be enough to power Hot Pockets to ongoing relevance. And the tacked on, hashtag powered “#teamcrust vs #teammeat” contest at the end won’t help either. Still, kudos to courage and staking out a new path. That’s all too rare in the belt-with-suspenders world of packaged goods advertising.