The end of the year is often a moment of reflection as we start to slow down for the festive celebrations and take a deep breath to consider the highs and lows of the past 12 months. PR Account Director Amanda Bunn takes stock.
Did we learn anything substantial?
Could we have done something differently?
Did anything stand out with the ‘wow’ factor?
Over the years there have been several occasions where brands have spectacularly captured the hearts and minds of consumers and achieved the ‘wow’ factor with a smart marketing campaign. John Lewis, with its highly anticipated Christmas adverts, or Nike, with its #ThisGirlCan campaign, are two fantastic examples of brands doing this perfectly.
The brand which absolutely caught my attention this year was Heineken with the ‘Open Your World’ campaign, which challenged Brits to break down barriers and find common ground with those who have opposing opinions. The aim of the campaign was to prove that even the most divided group can find common territory – all over a Heineken beer, obviously. Despite being met with mixed reviews, I found the advert really powerful to the point where I did gasp at one point (you’ll know where I mean when you watch it).
This week I spoke to members of the Mobas team to identify which brands had successfully turned their heads this year. Here are the top choices:
Catie Allwright, PR Account Executive:
“My stand-out marketer for 2017 has got to be Oatly, the Swedish oat-based alternative to dairy products. I love the style of the brand. It looks great, it’s founded in ethics and it’s consistently funny across all touchpoints – product packaging, social media and street advertising. It’s incredibly self-aware and connects with its audience, particularly the ‘millennial’ generation that has seen a huge vegan movement, but crucially not limited to this age group. A lot of its social content is around the ‘post-milk generation’, creating a community of customers who are unified in their lifestyle choices.”
Katie Sandell, Senior Account Manager:
“It’s seriously impressive how the BBC One Christmas 2017 ‘The Supporting Act’ advert was created – and it’s not all CGI making it really rich. Definitely check out the ‘Making of’ video.”
Lorna Hopkins, Senior Account Manager:
“My stand-out campaign (from a person who likes sport) was Nike’s #Breaking2 campaign earlier this year, developed to compete against Adidas which has been growing its market share. Nike had a new shoe launch (Zoom Vaporfly Elite) and wanted to make a big fuss about it. It took three sponsored athletes and tried to help break the two-hour marathon record with the shoes’ benefits of being lightweight, saving energy, etc. It took place in Monza in May and was streamed live on social. It was a massive PR success for Nike with worldwide coverage and various blogs/vlogs written thanks to influencers and live blogging at the event.”
Dale Haste, Creativity Director:
“Undoubtedly the campaign that touched me the most personally during 2017 was #showthelove from the Climate Coalition. Whatever you might think of the politics, as a creative professional, I was struck by its perfect pitch. The well-judged timbre and tone of voice, the un-hectoring, positive messaging and the whisper-to-a-roar inclusive approach. The elegancy, simplicity and accessibility of the green heart sticker as the icon of the campaign, and the clarity of the proposition:
“It is impacting on many things we cherish. It can be seen from the roaring football pitches to the silent woodlands. But we still have hope. A world powered by clean and secure energy within a generation is within our reach. We have the power to choose. Show the love.”
Amen to that.”
Roseanna Davies, Social Media Manager:
“My favourite was Mercedes-Benz’s S-Class advert, King of the City Jungle. A great use of VFX and long video for TV and social media – captivating and humorous.”
It’s been a big year for brands, adjusting their marketing to suit a changing economic and political climate, as well as huge advances in technology that they can capitalise on. What will 2018 have to offer?