3 min read

Mailchimp's New Campaign: Mass Marketing and Personalized Experiences

Mailchimp's New Campaign: Mass Marketing and Personalized Experiences

Mailchimp, the leading email marketing platform for small and midsize businesses, recently launched a new campaign highlighting the importance of personalization in customer engagement. 

Created by Mailchimp's in-house agency Wink Creative, in collaboration with production companies Prettybird and Breakfast for Dinner, and directed by Calmatic, the "Turn Clustomers into Customers" campaign brings to life the familiar pain point of businesses spamming their entire customer base with generic messages.

Keep reading to learn why personalization in customer engagement is something you need to focus on.

The Power of Personalization

Personalization has become critical in driving customer loyalty and business growth in today's competitive market. 

"Personalization really helps spur a ton of business and makes customers feel like they're being heard and that they're not just another cog in a brand's wheel," said Javier Molinos, creative director at Intuit Mailchimp's in-house agency Wink Creative. "They can become more emotionally invested in a brand when they feel like the brand is taking care of them properly and talking to them in the right way at the right time."

However, many small and midsize businesses struggle to achieve this level of personalization without the right tools. They often resort to blasting their entire customer list with the same message, resulting in a less-than-ideal customer experience.

Introducing the "Clustomer"

Mailchimp's new campaign creatively illustrates this challenge by introducing the concept of a "clustomer": a mass of diverse people jumbled together as a giant ball. In the 30-second spot, each person within the clustomer – whether an influencer, yoga practitioner, musician, cyclist, or office worker – receives a personalized email that allows them to separate from the collective and become a singular entity once again.

The campaign effectively communicates Mailchimp's value proposition: allowing businesses to personalize their marketing at scale, regardless of the size of their customer list. 

"Our customer bases have all of these different people, all with different buying behaviors, goals, and purchase patterns," said Pete Kehr, associate creative director at Wink. "We want to be like the Coinstar machine for our customers. We help them sort them, segment them, and then market to each one of those customers as uniquely as possible."

The Creative Process: From AI Rabbit Hole to Circus Act

Once Wink Creative settled on the "clustomer" concept, the team embarked on a creative journey to bring the idea to life. They dove "down the AI rabbit hole," using generative AI tools like Midjourney to explore visual representations of the clustomer. "I just started to prompt Midjourney with different words," Kehr said. "We were trying to find some sort of bold, eye-catching visual representation of what a customer was going to be."

While generative AI played a role in the creative process, Kehr emphasized the importance of the human element, noting that automation won't replace the entire job of a creative. 

Wink still had to develop the emotional mindstates of the customers, write dialogue, and create scenarios that would deepen the campaign and be used in bumper ads and six-second clips on social media.

The most striking aspect of the campaign is the clustomer itself. It was created practically during production and resembles a Cirque du Soleil act comprised of traditional actors and contortionists. 

The multi-day shoot proved to be a rewarding experience for Wink, its partners, and the performers in the clustomer. "You stick people in an enclosed space for a while, they're gonna get to know each other, and by the end of the shoot, a lot of the cast members had developed genuine relationships, exchanging numbers and making plans to keep in touch," Kehr said.

The Benefits of In-House Agencies

"Turn Clustomers into Customers" is the latest work from Wink, an in-house agency founded in 2020. The shop now employs more than 40 creatives and was named Ad Age's in-house agency of the year. 

While both Molinos and Kehr have extensive experience in traditional agencies – with past gigs at Wunderman Thompson, J. Walter Thompson, and 22squared between them – they find distinct advantages in the in-house approach.

"It sharpens everything," said Molinos. "The fact that the clients are your co-workers… a lot of the friction that might be within a traditional agency-client relationship is broken down, and conversations feel a lot more casual and inclusive."

Molinos also highlighted the in-depth product knowledge that in-house agencies possess. "The greatest strength that any in-house place has is that they really know the product better than anybody else," he said. "We live it, breathe it, every day. So it's kind of a superpower… it is definitely unique in terms of speed and closeness."

The Future of Personalized Marketing

Mailchimp's "Turn Clustomers into Customers" campaign is a powerful reminder of the importance of personalization in modern marketing. As businesses continue to navigate the challenges of engaging diverse customer bases, platforms like Mailchimp offer the tools and insights needed to create targeted, relevant experiences at scale.

By leveraging a combination of creative storytelling, practical effects, and cutting-edge technology—including generative AI—Wink Creative has delivered a campaign that resonates with marketers and customers alike. As the marketing landscape continues to evolve, the ability to personalize experiences will remain a critical factor in driving business success.

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