Hot sauce brand Truff debuts first TV ad after social media success

The brand's first national ad seeks to introduce grocery shoppers not familiar with its digital story.

Hot sauce brand Truff debuts first TV ad after social media success

Truff is seeking to introduce itself to shoppers as it expands from its direct-to-consumer roots into mainstream grocery stores, including Target, Costco, Kroger and Publix. Its 6-ounce bottle, known for its cap resembling a diamond-cut truffle, carries a suggested retail price of $14.99, or about three times the price of most competing hot sauces. 

“As Truff becomes more accessible, it’s important for us to find different channels to build brand awareness in a mass way,” said Nick Guillen, co-founder and co-CEO of Truff, in emailed comments. “TV allows for us to get on the radar of those who may have not been familiar with our digital presence, especially as it gives us access to several different audiences and demographics.”

Truff has engaged Tatari as its media agency of record. The campaign will run throughout the fourth quarter on linear and streaming networks including the NFL Network, Comedy Central, Cooking Channel, Bravo, Peacock and Paramount+. Ads will also run on YouTube. The company did not disclose how much it was spending on the campaign.

Truff’s online success came through the Instagram account, @sauce, which built an audience behind an intersection of hip-hop culture and food long before the product existed. Truff grew online through chef testimonials, appearances in hip-hop videos and recognition from influencers such as Oprah Winfrey, who twice named Truff to her “Favorite Things” list.

Read more: Behind Truff's sizzling rise

More recently Truff has done restaurant collaborations, some outdoor ads, and a YouTube series called “What the Truff?!” Michelle Gabe, Truff’s director of marketing, is a recent recipient of Ad Age’s 40 Under 40 recognition.

The new ad was directed by David Ma and showcases elements of the brand familiar to its online followers, such as its distinct color and pour. Its objective is to “hit every type of shopper,” Guillen said. 

“While thinking of our creative concept for the spot, we wanted something with mass appeal,” Guillen said. A survey the brand conducted indicated an 89% to 95% favorability rating among demographics from “Gen Z to 55+," Guillen said. “[The] main takeaways from the survey was that it was 'funny,' 'memorable' and 'delicious.'"