Campaign: Consumer PR - Anzac builds up biscuit reputation in the UK

Campaign: The Great Aussie Dunk Client: Anzac Biscuits PR team: The Impact Agency Timescale: January-April 2004 Budget: £4,000-£5,000

Anzac Biscuits have a loyal following in their native Australia, where they were originally baked by the mothers and wives of soldiers fighting in WWI. The biscuits had been available in the UK since July last year, but were still relatively unknown. Objectives

To raise awareness of Anzac Biscuits' availability in Sainsbury's stores throughout the UK. To increase sales.

Strategy and Plan

The Impact Agency wanted to capitalise on the Australian heritage of the brand, so focused its efforts on Australia Day (26 January), a public holiday marking the country's federation.

Media coverage of the event is usually dominated by the Australian beer brands, however, so the challenge was to get a strong share of coverage for Anzac Biscuits.

The goal was to drive mentions of the biscuits in the national press and on daytime national TV, along with business and London regional press that might be read by secretaries who buy the office biscuits. Information, photos and samples were sent to target print media, while TV programmes were given biscuits and coffee mugs with the Australian flag on them.

The TV shows were urged to use the biscuits in their regular cooking slots, and the media pack they were supplied with included recipe suggestions.

Radio stations, meanwhile, were sent Anzac Biscuits and Hob Nobs, and encouraged to take part in a dunking contest that pitted the Australian product against a British classic.

The business titles targeted ran competitions in which readers could win a case of Anzac Biscuits for their office, while the accompanying copy encouraged secretaries to bring a taste of Australia to their office on 26 January and help the Royal British Legion - four per cent of Anzac Biscuit sales go to the Royal British Legion's Poppy Appeal.

After Australia Day, the agency approached a wider media base, especially men's magazines and TV cookery shows, with the dunking angle. It is currently looking for coverage in hobby titles that target older consumers.

Measurement and Evaluation

Articles mentioning Anzac Biscuits ran in the Daily Express's Saturday Express magazine and Mail On Sunday supplement Night and Day. Anzac Biscuits also featured heavily in the 26 January broadcast of Ready, Steady, Cook. Post-Australia Day coverage followed in Bella, Nine2Five, Sky TV's Good Food Live, Mature Tymes and on Saga Radio.

There was no budget for using an external cuttings or evaluation agency to assess the quality of the coverage achieved, although internal evaluation showed that stories resulting from the campaign did not say anything negative about Anzac Biscuits.

Results

Sales of Anzac Biscuits went up by 110 per cent immediately after the Australia Day coverage. The producers and distributors are now targeting other UK supermarkets to sell the biscuits.

Instead of the radio stations carrying out the suggested dunking contest, Saga Radio producer Holly Tatham arranged for a seven-minute slot on Anzac Biscuits in January, which featured an interview with The Impact Agency's client.

'We wanted to run a slot on the biscuits because we thought that with our audience being 50-plus, they'd be interested in something that was being brought back, that it would be something that a lot of people would remember,' she says.

'The public relations team was very good - it gave us lots of great background information both about the history of it all and about the charity aspect. And it sent in some of the biscuits,' she adds.

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