Oreo Thins, Microsoft 365 encourage workers to take a snack break

Oreo Thins, Microsoft 365 encourage workers to take a snack break

Dive Brief: 

  • Mondelēz International brand Oreo Thins and Microsoft 365 urge burnt-out workers to take time for themselves in a new campaign, according to details shared with Marketing Dive. 
  • Consumers can visit a designated landing page to receive a “Thinvite” in their inbox that will block off 2:00 p.m. to 2:15 p.m. ET on their calendars from Nov. 1-3 for a snack break. A link to a Microsoft Teams event enables users to watch a playful puppy video.
  • Amid a boom in the snacking category, the tie-up includes a limited-edition Snack Break Expansion Cookie pack that comes with Oreo Thins and a dunking tool modeled after Microsoft’s original office assistant. Oreo-themed emojis for use in Teams are also available. 

Dive Insight:

Oreo Thins and Microsoft have teamed up in an attempt to tackle the record levels of burnout and work-related stress that employees are facing — much of it ushered in by the ongoing pandemic and constant adjusting to remote or hybrid schedules, or the daunting return to the office. The campaign also comes as brands respond to demands by consumers to see strides in mental health conversations to help address increases in stress, anxiety and depression. 

Center to the Oreo Thins and Microsoft tie-in is the encouragement for workers to take time for themselves during the work day. After signing up to receive a calendar invite, or “thinvite,” a 15-minute window beginning at 2 p.m. ET each day from Nov. 1-3 will be blocked off, encouraging employees to grab an Oreo treat. The invite will also include a link to a Microsoft Teams event, which will feature a video of eight playful puppies taking over an office in an attempt to curb stress. The video, titled “Return to the Pawfice,” was produced by Microsoft 365 and Oreo Thins.

“We are not only giving our fans permission to take that break … we’re hoping this inspires our fans to schedule designated snack times on their calendars for weeks and months to come,” said Sky Thompson, brand manager for Oreo, in a statement shared with Marketing Dive.

Along with the meeting invites, Microsoft also created two Oreo-themed emojis that can be used in a Microsoft Teams chat. The emojis appear when users type “oreo” and “oreoyum” in a chat bar, prompting either a spinning Oreo emoji or a character eating the treat. Consumers also had the opportunity to order the free “Oreo Thins Snack Break Cookie Expansion Pack,” which featured a nostalgic dunking tool and additional cookies, though the offering quickly sold out. 

Other brands have also looked for ways to offer work-related relief. For example, Grubhub earlier this year cited research that found 69% of working New Yorkers admit they have skipped lunch because they were too busy. In response, the delivery service launched a promotion to give employees in New York City a free lunch when ordering through the app — though, the tie-up turned out to be ill-fated when demand far outstripped supply.

In other examples of consumer brands trying to engage burned out workers, AB InBev’s Estrella Jalisco paid some to quit their job and Heineken developed a bottle opener that shuts down work apps. 

The tie-up with Oreo comes as Microsoft looks to maintain its momentum as the workplace remains in tumult, with many workers adopting hybrid schedules while others are returning fully to work or opting to take meetings in person out of eagerness for connection. Microsoft in the second quarter this year reported revenue of $51.7 billion, a 20% year-over-year increase, per its earnings call.