When Life Gives You Lemons


Brand Awareness

It was February 2020, and Sunkist had just launched a marketing pop up event tour giving Canadian consumers a chance to experience the versatility of citrus. But when the pandemic hit North America just a few weeks later, we were forced to pivot our planned Toronto activation in observance of social distancing and other preventative public health measures. How would we convince Canadians to purchase Sunkist citrus without an in-person sampling event? And ensure we’re being sensitive to the tumultuous situation the entire world was in at the same time?


As Canadians across the country hunkered down, we knew they needed entertainment, inspiration and creative ways to connect now more than ever.

So, we turned our campaign set back into an opportunity.

Given we couldn’t get together in person, we did the next best thing by leveraging the timely popularity of Instagram Live to help consumers stay healthy and connected, digitally – with the launch of When Life Gives You Lemons, a citrus-infused talk show.


During the early days of the pandemic, people all over the world turned to video conferencing technology to stay connected to friends and family while many influencers, content creators and celebrities used Instagram Live to collaborate and connect with their audiences.

We saw an opportunity to leverage this emerging platform mechanic to deliver relevant, engaging content to audiences that met the current moment and delivered practical benefits to consumers.

By partnering with a macro influencer with radio/television experience and micro-influencers with creative skill sets across cuisine and home décor, we were able to recreate the recognizable tropes of a television talk show (ala Jimmy Fallon, Ellen DeGeneres, etc.) on social that placed the versatility and nutritional benefits of citrus at the center of the content.


We launched our talk show with teaser content across owned and influencer channels, promoting the show’s concept, media personality host, influencer guests and upcoming showtimes to generate buzz and anticipation.

After two weeks of promotion and paid media support, it was show time.

With a relatable title, positive-vibes-only content and a professional broadcast host – When Life Gives You Lemons launched with a bang.

Leveraging remote filming kits shipped to the homes of our host and influencers guests, we directed, filmed and aired all three When Live Gives You Lemons episodes live on Instagram.

Each episode featured a short interview and demonstration segment in which our influencer guest taught our host Deepa Prashad how to recreate their favourite citrus-centric recipe or home décor hack.

And to ensure the campaign lived on beyond each episode’s original air date, we quickly cut and edited the live versions into Instagram TV posts for Sunkist’s owned channel and promoted each episode with paid media.


The campaign effectively capitalized on a timely social trend to generate brand awareness, garnering 9.6M impressions and generating 381K social media engagements across owned and influencer channels. The campaign content also drove consideration of Sunkist as a fresh citrus brand by driving 7.4K visits to Sunkist.com where viewers could view the recipes detailed in each video so they could recreate them at home.