Great PR Campaigns from August
From miracle sleep cream to flying pigs, August was a busy month for innovative PR campaigns. Here’s a look at three of my favourites:
Lush lullaby lotion
High-street cosmetics and bath/body supplies retailer Lush achieved some great PR coverage, after a mum from Essex appeared on the Daily Mail website claiming that their £8 bottle of lotion helped her baby daughter sleep for 14 solid hours.
Before she discovered Lush’s Sleepy Body Lotion, Parris Chloee claimed that her 18-month-old daughter would wake up five or six times every night, wanting to play.
The sleep deprivation took its toll on Parris, a single mum, who works up to 15-hours a day as a support worker.
In desperation, Parris asked staff in Lush if they could recommend anything to help, and they handed over the lotion, made from oatmeal, lavender and tonka bean. Parris started applying it to her daughter at night, and has hailed it a ‘miracle cream’. Her daughter now allegedly has up to 14 hours uninterrupted sleep every night.
The story did the rounds in the Metro, Mirror and parenting sites like Made for Mums. It also popped up on discussion boards like Mumsnet. This led to coverage in non-parenting magazines such as Cosmopolitan, for its ability to improve the quality of sleep in adults.
If Lush had bragged about the product in an advert, it wouldn’t have resulted in the attention it’s received. Third party endorsements hold a lot of sway with the press and public; in this case, leading to blanket coverage and Lush selling out of the lotion within hours of the story coming out.
Walkers puts the fate of its top three flavours to a public vote
Never shy of a publicity stunt, crisp manufacturer Walkers has courted controversy with its latest campaign, which has a distinctly Brexit flavour.
The iconic snack brand announced last month that it’s putting the fate of three of its most popular flavours in the hands of the Great British voting public. Customers can vote online to keep classic Salt and Vinegar, Prawn Cocktail and Smoky Bacon flavours, or replace them with three new flavours, sold in other parts of the world: Lime and Black Pepper, Paprika and Bacon and Cheddar.
Votes can be made online and the flavour with the least number of votes, as well as the fewest sales, will be discontinued in the UK.
The announcement outraged Walkers fans, who took to social media to vent at the possibility of their most loved flavours being axed, but this is exactly what Walkers wanted. The public’s passion for the savoury snack has resulted in a surge of visitors to the website, votes, and plenty of press coverage.
Given the buying figures, it’s fairly unlikely one of the flavours will be lost forever. But it’s not outside the realms of possibility, given Britain’s penchant for having a laugh with these things.
Voting in the crisp ‘referendum’ began on 14 August and closes on 22 October.
Pigs Can Fly
The third most ‘memorable PR campaign from August’ award goes to betting website Marathonbet, that made the impossible happen last month, by making pigs fly.
In a bid to reflect the slim chance Brighton Football Club has of winning the Premier League, the betting website attached four model pigs to drones and flew them over Brighton beach. The stunt was designed to raise awareness of the mega 5,000/1 odds they were offering on Brighton lifting the Premier League trophy. The stunt was simple, eye-catching and on-brand. It caused quite the frenzy on social media, with passers by sharing their shots of the flying pigs using the hashtag #PigsCanFly