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Cadbury Worldwide Hide: Inspiring the ritual of hiding eggs and connecting people with Google Maps Platform
VCCP London and the VCCP CX team
May 13, 2021
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Editor’s note: Today’s post is a Q&A with the VCCP London and VCCP CX team. VCCP London conceived of and built the Cadbury Worldwide Hide platform using Google Maps Platform as a way to get consumers ‘hiding’ eggs and engaging with loved ones during a time when they could not be physically together.

How did the team come up with the idea for the ‘Cadbury Worldwide Hide’?

VCCP London is the agency of record for Cadbury both locally in the UK and centrally with the Global team. So, when Cadbury briefed us in May for their Easter 2021 campaign, they wanted us to come up with a creative way to encourage people to connect with loved ones over the Easter period. At the time, the pandemic was constantly changing, and it was looking like we were going to continue to be in lock-down for the foreseeable future, into the Easter season.

We then came up with an idea: wouldn’t it be really cool if somehow you could still hide a real Easter egg for someone you love, but do it virtually. And then once it’s found, that real egg could be delivered to the recipient's home. With the use of some creativity and technology, we brought this idea to life. The experience we developed allowed our users to purchase a real Cadbury Easter Egg, hide it virtually on the map in a special location, then write the recipient a personalized clue for him to find the egg. Once the recipient found the egg, they would receive a real, physical egg the hider bought for them delivered to their home.

We wanted it to be a truly meaningful one-to-one connection, to bring back some lovely memories for people, and to allow a real chocolate egg to be hidden for a loved one no matter where they were.

Cadbury Worldwide Hide

Why was this important to Cadbury?

Generosity is at the heart of Cadbury's brand, and Easter is our opportunity to show that ‘there’s a glass and a half in everyone’. As we enter the second year of our campaign ‘Show you care, hide it’, we are flipping the Easter ritual on its head and showing that the generous act is in hiding an egg for someone you love.

Physical connection has been restricted by the global pandemic and that’s why this year’s Easter campaign sets out to connect people across the globe through the power of generosity.

Cadbury Experience Across Platforms

The ‘Mobile First’ approach allowed consumers to access the platform from any device with consistent, engaging brand experience.

Seeker Hints

A 'recipient' can begin the search and continue to find the egg with clues provided by the ‘hider’.

Tell us a little bit about the technical side of the project. Which Google Maps Platform products did you use to create the user experience?

The Cadbury Worldwide Hide launched across 4 markets (UK, IE, AU, NZ) simultaneously. Integration with regional e-commerce and CRM partners brought the activation into the real world with chocolate eggs being delivered throughout the campaign as seekers found them.

Providing an engaging map experience to our users was key to the execution and by leveraging the Google Maps interface consumers already use on a daily basis, we were able to focus on our core campaign message. We built the platform using both the Maps Javascript API to render the 2D maps and the Street View API, which allowed users to hide their egg anywhere in the world for their loved one to find. We also used Place Autocomplete powered search allowing users to search for their favorite location while contextual hints kept hiders on track. Recipients were aided with a distance meter and hints system if they got stuck. Our Design and Engineering team used Google Maps Platform Cloud-based maps styling to customize the map.

To get the campaign to as many people as possible we prioritized accessibility throughout the site, from screen-reader support and relevant tab indexes through to full keyboard shortcuts within the map experience - allowing users to hide (or find!) their egg without ever using a mouse. Real user testing was done throughout the UX, design and development process to ensure best practices were being followed.

Street View of Cadbury seeker

The ‘recipient’ locates the egg and can see it on the map and within Street View.

How long did it take the VCCP team to build-out the solution?

Discovery to the roll-out of the solution took about 7 months. Our Design and Engineering team started with a 4-week discovery phase in September 2020 where we developed a service blueprint that set the foundations of the project. By visualizing the entire process of a service from start to finish, listing all the activities that happened at each stage, and the different roles, actions, processes and systems involved, the blueprint allowed all stakeholders to align on the solution.

We started iterative cycles of development in November 2020, beginning with UX (prototype for user testing), UI (look and feel and customization of Google Maps using Cloud-based Maps styling), and then kicked off front end and back end development in December. We launched the Cadbury Worldwide Hide platform in early March 2021—just in time for millions of users around the world to enjoy ahead of Easter.

Did you experience any challenges as you developed the experience?

The biggest challenge was actually around adapting to change in plans in response to the desire to launch the platform across more markets than originally intended. During the development phase, we rapidly scaled up to develop the platform for Ireland, Australia and New Zealand in addition to the UK within the same timeframe.

What results were you able to achieve and how did you measure the success of the project?

One week before Easter Sunday, we had sold out of Cadbury Worldwide Hide chocolate eggs. There were over 2.26 million site visits with an average time spent on the platform of almost five minutes. Over 809k virtual eggs were hidden in total and 14.5k real Cadbury Easter eggs bought. The Cadbury Worldwide Hide platform was the number one Mondelēz International website globally, and a couple even used the platform for a marriage proposal!

The seeker found the egg

The ‘seeker’ confirmation that they have found the eggs.

Would you recommend this type of campaign and user engagement to other B-to-C brands, if so, why?

Direct to consumer capabilities are increasingly important for brands, particularly in the FMCG (Fast Moving Consumer Goods) space. Local lockdowns and restrictions on physical retail have accelerated our adoption of ecommerce. Not only have brands had to adapt quickly, but consumers are beginning to expect direct-to-consumer capabilities from their favorite brands. Cadbury recognized this behavior shift early. What the Cadbury Worldwide Hide did well was to innovate beyond the traditional DTC and ecommerce experience by gamifying the platform and enabling moments of human connection at a time when physical connection was impossible. 

What advice would you give to other agencies or brands thinking about creating user experiences with Google Maps Platform?

We learned a great deal taking on this project. Here are just a few highlights:

  • Assume anything is possible.

  • Our ‘Mobile First’ approach allowed consumers to access the platform from any device with consistent, engaging brand experience.

  • Think big and beyond the traditional use of Google Maps and treat it as a foundation platform to build upon.

  • Prototype and test early to validate your hypotheses. We created a technical proof of concept which enabled us to test using ‘real’ Google Maps and real people early in our design process.

  • Don’t assume everything is accessible to everyone. You may need to build upon the ‘out the box’ functionality to ensure as many people as possible can use your solution.

For more information on Google Maps Platform, visit our website.

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