Facebook Contest: Lay’s Uses Crowdsourcing to Find New Flavor

Lay's campaign uses crowd sourcing on social mediaLay’s is one of the latest brands to experiment with crowdsourcing on social media — by allowing consumers to submit recipes for a new chip, and fans on Facebook to vote for the best new flavor.

The campaign is called “Do Us a Flavor” and entices consumers to submit their potato chip recipes with the promise of $1 million (or 1% of the flavor’s net sales in 2013) for the winning flavor.  Lay’s will select three finalists, who will see their recipe developed into flavors and sold in early 2013; then Facebook fans will vote on the final winning flavor.

 Lay's "Do Us A Flavor" crowd sourced contest on Facebook

Lay’s has already been running these “create-a-chip” contests outside of the U.S., with previous winning flavors including:

  • Caesar-salad chips in Australia
  • shrimp chips in Egypt
  • sausage chips in Egypt
  • pickled cucumber chips in Serbia

Launching on Friday, July 20th, “Do Us A Flavor” will be the largest promotion in Lay’s 75-year history, according to Ram Krishnan, vice president of marketing at Frito-Lay (USA Today).  Suggestions are already pouring in from the 4.2 million fans on Lay’s Facebook page — and the contest hasn’t even officially launched yet.

Facebook is even changing the rules for this campaign, replacing the “like” button with an “I’d Eat That” button for consumers comparing suggested chip flavors on the social network.

Other brands to use crowdsourcing via social media include: Harley Davidson (fans submit creative marketing/ads), Samuel Adams (create a new, crowdsourced beer), Arizona Iced Tea (create a new flavor) and McDonald’s (submit new burger recipes, outside the U.S. only).

Crowdsourcing on social media looks like a win/win: fans engage with the brand and feel they have a chance to be heard, and the brand gets great new ideas (and a lot of enthusiasm) from their followers. And in this case, Lay’s is also offering a serious financial incentive — making the contest that much more exciting for participants.