MARKETING SOCIETY AWARDS for EXCELLENCE 2012: Marketing on a shoestring

WINNER Headway (Agency Abbot Mead Vickers BBDO)

When a cycle helmet saved James Cracknell's life following a bike accident, it spurred the former Olympic athlete to get the message out to other cyclists to wear helmets. With no marketing budget at his disposal, he called in favours from friends in the marketing world and made a short film explaining how the helmet saved his life.

Cracknell created a hard-hitting film using his testimony straight to camera with visual effects showing how a bike crash affects the brain.

The film was released via Cracknell's own Twitter account and rapidly spread among his followers and beyond. As a result, he appeared on television programmes including This Morning, Lorraine and The Wright Stuff. The campaign partnered with the brain injury association Headway to spread the message. Done on a shoestring, but with great attention paid to the planning and creative detail, the film created high value in earned media and is believed to have saved lives. The strong creative treatment gave the film a viral momentum. It juxtaposed James, a former Olympian, with the fragility of his skull.

Garnering some 80,000 views on YouTube, the film also generated 1,627 mentions within social media in three months. The campaign proves the power of social media to relay powerful messages with minimal budgets and the judges noted the following: 'What Headway has done with what it had is incredibly compelling. It used Cracknell's profile and social media reach to create an amazing asset.'

HIGHLY COMMENDED

Maille

Boosting awareness and sales of speciality French mustard Maille was achieved in 2011 on a shoestring budget of £200,000.

Through allying the brand with the emerging Supper Club movement - where 'citizen chefs' open up their homes to become amateur restaurants - Maille was able to demonstrate its passion for food and commitment to great dinner party cooking. Waitrose bought into the idea and Maille created a brand partnership with the retailer with no money changing hands.

Some 200,000 people visited the Maille Boutique London pop-up store over five days. Maille received 73 pieces of branded press coverage, reaching up to 10 million people. Overall, value market share increased by 0.7% to 12.3% in 2011. 'A neat, tight way of spending the money in a highly focused way,' said the judges.

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