Combos – What your mom would feed you, if your mom were a man

This Combos campaign from TBWA\Chiat\Day in New York features some excellent stupid guy humor. The concept: how life would be different if your mom were a man. The upshot: you’d suddenly be eating a whole lot more Combos, among many other not-so-subtle changes. The tagline: “What your mom would feed you … if your mom were a man.” So simple. So stupid. It’s great.

GRACE
Man-mom insists her son says grace before eating combos.

DINNER
Man mom is pleased to see that her son’s already eating combos for dinner.

HEARTH TO HEARTH
Man-mom’s son confides in her about his personal problems, but her thoughts are more focused on Combos.

FEVER
Man-mom’s son wakes her up in the middle of the night with a fever, so she gives him Combos.

VIDEOGAME
Man mom is pleased to see that her son’s already eating combos for dinner.

Describe the campaign
Combos are hollow pretzel nuggets filled with a cheesy center. Since they taste remarkably like nachos or pizza, they’re the ultimate guy food. This led us to: “Combos. What your mom would feed you if your mom were a man” and, subsequently, to the character Man Mom: a manly mother who embodies the campaign idea. Man Mom puts in the least amount of parental effort possible, including always feeding her sons Combos.
Describe how the campaign was launched and executed across each channel in the order of implementation.
The campaign launched with 5 TV spots, all featuring Man Mom and her two grown-up sons who still live at home.
TV was supplemented by radio in which Man Mom gives soliloquies of not-so motherly advice, including eating Combos.
We rounded out the campaign with http://www.man-mom.com: a site where people were encouraged to submit photos of real-life Man Moms (people who blur the line between “mom” and “man”). Viewers could vote on whether a submitted Man Mom was more “man” or “mom”, view the top-10 Man Moms, watch the TV commercials or listen to the Man Mom mood music.
Give some idea of how successful this campaign was with both client and consumer.
The Combos Man Mom campaign succeeded in creating an iconic character that embodies the brand. It also achieved above average recognition, significantly higher levels of claimed ad awareness and grew overall brand awareness. As example of the campaign’s success is seen in the Man-Mom.com website, where traffic exceeded original projections by 38%.

Advertising agency: TBWA/CHIAT/DAY, New York
Creative Director: Gerry Graf/Scott Vitrone/Ian Reichenthal
Copywriter: Isaac Silvergate
Art Director: Jeff Andersen
Production Company: Moxie Pictures, New York
Director: Martin Granger



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