Case study

Milk-Bone reaches new customers with Alexa interactive audio ads

8 December 2023 | By Jennifer Vargas, Senior Product Marketing Manager


Since the company was founded in 1908, Milk-Bone has been on a mission to cater to dogs of all shapes and sizes. For more than a century, Milk-Bone has gone from producing dog biscuits in a small New York City bakery to cultivating a household brand with treats that speak to every pup’s age, dietary need and culinary palate. The philosophy at Milk-Bone, of course, can be pared down to two words: more dog.

So, how did this legacy brand bring this unique philosophy to new customers, while also standing out in the highly competitive pet category?

To help answer this question, Milk-Bone worked with the Amazon Ads Global Large Customer Sales (LCS) Grocery team to build a comprehensive campaign featuring streaming video and audio advertising along with other Alexa interactive ad integrations to help bring their “More Dog” story to new customers and drive consideration.

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Milk-Bone has been a pantry staple for over 100 years and is synonymous with the joyful bond between dogs and their pet parents. Amazon plays an integral role in our everyday lives, and Alexa has become an incredible resource for consumers and pet parents alike.

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– Jasen Cusick, director of marketing, Milk-Bone

Keeping it simple: Just say, “Alexa, add to basket”

The campaign centred around the fun and simplicity of a dog’s life, featuring highly immersive ad experiences including interactive audio ads to help inspire customers to purchase right when they heard the ad.

Customers who are interested in Milk-Bone’s Dipped Dog Biscuits, for example, can simply say “Alexa, add to basket” while the ad is playing. Alexa instantly adds the corresponding product to their shopping basket. The entire interaction is done by voice, no hands required and once customers complete the action, they’re seamlessly taken right back to their listening session.

Click to play Milk-Bone’s interactive audio ad

Click to play Milk-Bone’s interactive audio ad that ran on the Amazon Music ad-supported tier on Alexa-enabled devices.

Amplifying the fun: “Alexa, more dog”

In addition to simplifying the shopping experience, Milk-Bone also created a branded experience with Alexa. These tailored ad experiences are discoverable through Amazon ad-supported streaming content from any Alexa-enabled device, including Echo smart speakers and Fire TV. Distinct from interactive audio ads, branded experiences with Alexa help audiences discover exclusive brand content through voice, screen tap or remote control in a more tailored way.

As part of the campaign, customers who heard or saw a Milk-Bone brand message on ad-supported content could interact by either saying “Alexa, more dog” to their Echo smart speaker or use their remote control on Fire TV.

The experience helped customers engage with a variety of playful activities, including a dog breed quiz, a Milk-Bone-inspired nickname generator, and even dog astrology. After customers completed their interaction with the branded experiences, they were able to opt in and receive emails with more information about the brand. For Milk-Bone, branded experiences offered an incremental opportunity to reach interested customers.

Click to play Milk-Bone’s “Alexa, more dog” branded experience with Alexa.

Bringing it all together

While even standard ads can effectively drive impact, Amazon Ads can also help create more memorable brand moments with Alexa interactive ad formats to help draw listeners across content.

The campaign launched in April 2022 and ran for two months, and revealed that Alexa interactive ad integrations can help reach potential new customers and drive consideration. Post-campaign, the results from Amazon first-party insights showed a new-to-brand rate of 31% among customers who asked Alexa to add Milk-Bone products to their basket, outperforming the category benchmark rate 1.4X.1 The results from a campaign-specific brand lift from a third-party measurement vendor, Kantar, showed 1.7X consideration lift as a result of the exposure from branded experiences with Alexa.2 Overall, over 11K users engaged with the More Dog branded experience, with almost 86% of sessions lasting for more than 30 seconds.1

Creating a successful ad campaign like Milk-Bone did for their More Dog campaign is a testament to the value of using Alexa interactive ad formats can pay off. Together with Amazon Ads, Milk-Bone was able to fulfil their goal of reaching existing or new customers.

“Creating a unique, interactive ad experience with Alexa was the perfect way for consumers to experience Milk-Bone in a new, immersive way,” said Jasen Cusick, the director of marketing at Milk-Bone.

1 Amazon internal data, US, 2022
2 Kantar Brand Lift, US, 2022