How to Create a Credible Campaign For Gen Z

OTTO x adidas

How to Create a Credible Campaign For Gen Z
Five content creators sitting together on a sofa

reaching gen z: when to stop thinking like ADVERTISERS AND Start thinking with Creators

the challenge

OTTO is Germany’s biggest e-commerce platform, yet, until recently, they were still best known for their print catalogues from the 90s. So how did we update the brand to 2023 and make OTTO relevant for Gen Z on TikTok, a platform where users punish classic marketing approaches by simply swiping them away? Online creativity, especially on TikTok, is rapid, unpolished and instinctive. It’s the currency of GenZ’s individual lifestyle. We had to find a way to think less like marketers and more like creators.


In order to reach our target group in a more native and natural way, we had to do one of the hardest things ever: let go. Instead of coming up with a well thought through concept and a massive video production, we gathered Germany’s five most successful influencers with a total of 6 million followers, and brought them together on a huge “TikTok playground” — a warehouse with seven sets full of tools and gadgets from OTTO, and a ton of products by our partner brand adidas Originals. With differently themed areas in vibrant colors, graffiti and chill out spaces, we found a way to connect OTTO’s design heritage with GenZ aesthetics. We avoided an expensive post-production and edited the footage right on set. All of this gave us the opportunity to let our creators do what they do best: 100% authentic content that’s adored by Gen Z.


The result was five extremely impressed creators, a super-impressed community, and some very impressive numbers on TikTok: Over 90 million impressions, over 6 million users reached, over 300,000 likes, generated by only 19 assets, and an almost 80% increase in followers for OTTO in four weeks. But most importantly, we finally got credible, truly authentic content for Gen Z with a brand that stands for street cred like no other — adidas Originals. Turns out, if you put together brands that know who they want to approach together with content creators who know what they are doing, you get realness, with kudos from the most authentic generation so far. The cherry on top? TikTok Business published our success story as a flagship campaign, and we won Merit Honor at the Art Directors Club for Germany Awards. So, always remember, together is nicer.

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