Food/Event - Food federation starts new ice age

Campaign: The New Ice Age

Client: The British Frozen Food Federation
PR team: ONE
Timescale: August 2008-ongoing
Budget: In excess of £100,000

The British Frozen Food Federation (BFFF) is the leading trade association for the frozen food industry. It wanted a consumer-friendly face to promote the benefits of frozen food to a target audience of UK mums aged 27 to 50. ONE was appointed to help the BFFF cross over from trade to consumer.

Objectives

- To create a consumer-friendly face for the BFFF

- To dispel some frozen food myths

- To raise awareness and educate mothers on the benefits of frozen food, focusing on the nutritional, financial and convenience advantages

- To encourage more people to incorporate frozen food into their daily meals.

Strategy and plan

ONE decided to create a new, consumer-facing website called theNewIceAge.com, as a platform for distributing information. The website was also to be used as an online resource for journalists and a showcase for frozen food for consumers.

The website combined professional spokespeople, including a financial expert, a nutritionist and a chef who could advise on recipes, message boards and a 'field operative' element. This allowed members of the public to experience the frozen food manufacturing process first-hand then produce a diary, video report and photos of their experience.

To drive traffic to the site, ONE created an 'ice wall' on London's South Bank. This two-metre tall, backlit wall contained frozen food items suspended in each block. People walking past were given leaflets about the BFFF and encouraged to enter competitions with prizes including dinner for two at the Absolut Ice Bar in London and a trip to Sweden's Ice Hotel.

A launch event was also held at London's Absolut Ice Bar and was attended by more than 35 journalists from national, regional, food, health and consumer media.

To accompany the launch, ONE released a survey of more than 1,000 UK mums showing more than 50 per cent felt under pressure to reduce food bills. The results were released on the same day as a radio campaign by theNewIceAge's financial spokesperson, on the cost-saving benefits of frozen food.

Measurement and evaluation

Following its launch, theNewIceAge.com received more than 70 mentions in national and regional newspapers, regional radio, trade and consumer magazines, and online publications. This included coverage in The Guardian, The Daily Telegraph and trade bible The Grocer. The ice wall also sparked interest across social networking sites, where images from passers-by were uploaded and attracted comments.

Results

In the weeks following its launch, the site received more than 6,000 unique visitors. The competition for the Ice Bar and Ice Hotel had more than 2,400 entries. The message board on theNewIceAge.com has received questions from the public about frozen food, and theNewIceAge spokespeople have begun sharing their expertise on the site and in the media.

SECOND OPINION - GEMMA HARRIS, Director of creative, events and experiential, McKenna Townsend

I like this campaign because it is brave, beautifully visual and well-executed. Stunt-led activity means you have to be bold enough to invent possibilities that get your brand noticed, while remaining true to your brand objectives.

This stunt appeals because of its creative simplicity - it does what it says on the tin, capturing 'locked-in freshness'.

What really gets the campaign in-flight are the additional message carriers. The interactive website is a perfect information platform for mums, while the clever use of experts, both on and offline, delivers the varied BFFF messages.

The additional media relations tactics are focused and the Ice Bar, Ice Hotel and Absolut are nice cues, giving the campaign extra PR appeal.

Where the campaign melts a little for me is its lack of strategic media partners to deliver traffic to the website - a tie-in with an online social networking media partner such as netmums.com, for example, could have improved online coverage and added to the campaign's credibility and trust.

Did the campaign create a sales uplift? It would be interesting to see whether this campaign scored, not only with sales, but on consumer testing key performance indicators, in terms of brand recognition.

All in all, a well-rounded, stunt-led campaign success and kudos to the client as well; it certainly did not get cold feet placing its confidence in a big stunt.

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