Chocolate companies the world over have launched Advent Calendars for December in a highly competitive market. There are three stand-out factors: chocolate taste, design, and price. Master chocolatiers will be leading the market for those interested in the taste of the chocolate. Branded designs will be winning over those who care about appearance, while affordability will snag those who just want something to open. So, for middle-of-the-range brands, there isn't much to do to push their calendars to the front of the pack. Unless they use some natural and sneaky PR.
Mars, Incorporated's Celebrations offered a master class in using the secondary function of social media - complaining - to their advantage. Their strategy was simple: put the universally least liked chocolate behind the first door. With a Bounty to open on the first day, with the excitement having been built only to find a chocolate that a high proportion of the population doesn't like, means that many took to social media to vent their frustrations. Hence, Celebrations gained a series of free mentions, which, due to the comedic nature of the mentions, gained them further engagement. They even gained press attention for their stunt - adding a Snickers (presumably the second least liked chocolate) to the second day to mop up anyone who didn't complain about their first door. The move won't have harmed Celebrations - everyone knows Bounties and Snickers will crop up - but it has gained them a great deal of publicity in a time when chocolate is one of the key FMCG products.