Holmes Report 24 Apr 2011 // 11:00PM GMT
Valentine’s Day is always a cluttered media event, with thousands of companies vying for the attention of the amorous buying public. When Lindt came to Publicasity with a budget of £18,950, aiming to get cut-through in the run-up to this romantic day, we knew it was going to be a challenge.
That wasn’t our only concern – despite the fact that the campaign needed to ensure ‘new’ news hooks to gain good coverage, the client wanted the 2010 campaign to be an extension of 2009’s Valentine’s Day campaign.
Despite this, by choosing an imagination-grabbing concept based around modern chivalry, we achieved a PR coverage value of £361,378 – ROI x19, with blanket coverage in key titles including Metro, Telegraph, Express, The Guardian, The Evening Standard, and Lindt even made it onto the sofas of This Morning.
The client wanted to raise awareness of its Valentine’s Day products, particularly its LINDOR line – the chocolate characterised by a hard chocolate shell and a smooth chocolate filling.
Lindt wanted to establish LINDOR as the ‘must-have’ gift for Valentine’s Day, targeting the LINDOR lover and male purchaser, with particular focus on the 200g Milk Chocolate Cornet.
However, the client wanted us to build on 2009’s ‘Credit Crunch Love’ Valentine’s Day campaign, based around a survey into people’s attitudes towards romance during the credit crunch.
Not dissimilar to the 2009 campaign, the 2010 programme also had to fit into LINDOR’s creative platform of ‘Little Romantic Gestures’, the thinking behind this was because LINDOR is a small truffle that gives you a ‘moment of indulgence’.
The concept we developed was the ‘Lindt LINDOR Code of Modern Chivalry’, which we thought it could be used to gauge the nation’s attitudes towards chivalrous behaviour. We decided on this because it was a natural progression from the previous year’s ‘Credit Crunch Love’ survey and it fitted within the LINDOR ‘Little Romantic Gestures’ creative platform.
The backbone of the concept would be a strong research piece. So, we briefed Opinion Matters to conduct a survey of 2,000 participants to determine the nation’s thoughts on modern chivalrous behaviour, covering issues such as flirting, compliment paying and gifting. The research was conducted in January 2010 and cost £3,000.
The questionnaire asked participants whether they had ever written or received love letters or romantic poems, given flowers or sent a Valentine’s Day greeting via Twitter. The top line results found that 62 per cent of women appreciate small, thoughtful gestures such as their favourite chocolates, above extravagant and often impersonal gifts.
The results were extrapolated and issued as a short-lead press release in February 2010, headlined ‘Men, go back to the rule book….modern romance doesn’t cut it with today’s women!’.
Publicasity hired US life strategist and agony aunt Jenni Trent-Hughes for £3,000 to act as the ‘LINDOR chivalry expert’ and expert voice for the campaign - chosen because we felt she was best suited to talk about the subject credibly.
Trent-Hughes’ quotes were added into the survey press release, and she was also used for broadcast interviews to discuss the story, focussing on the survey findings and weaving in messaging about Lindt’s products and the code of chivalry hook.
Trent-Hughes provided advice on creating the perfect Valentine’s, emphasising the ‘small gestures that will melt her heart’, referring back to the creative platform.
On the social media side, Trent-Hughes also conducted a series of 15 web chats in which she helped solve individual participants’ Valentine’s dilemmas. In each web chat she recommended the individual visits Lindt.com to find their ideal Valentine’s Day gift and to receive hints on making the day special. Web chat footage was uploaded onto Lindt.com.
Chivalry questions and answers asking ‘What kind of Knight are you?’ were also provided for inclusion on the website, with hints and tips from Jenni Trent-Hughes.
But it wasn’t all high-level concept. While this was going on, Publicasity also handled a hard-working product placement campaign to feature products in media such as This Morning, the London Weekly, The Evening Standard and Love It!, establishing it as a must-have gift. Media samples were issued to ensure trial of the product and suitability for readers.
A style card was designed to create additional cut-through with the media and issued to key media contacts as a call to action.
The coverage speaks for itself. With a modest £18,950 budget, we achieved PR coverage value of £361,378 – 19 times return on investment. Coverage included The Guardian, The Daily Telegraph, Metro, Daily Mail, Daily Mail Online, Daily Mirror, Channel4.com, Independent.co.uk, Daily Star plus much more.
We promised the client a minimum of 12 regional UK radio stations. And we beat this by gaining 15. The combined PR audience reach was 335,448,195.
This campaign is worthy of an award due to the outstanding results achieved on media and conducting a hard-working press office, alongside a relevant news generation story during a traditionally competitive time, as all major confectionery brands are vying for consumer attention.