Client: Marks & Spencer/Sara Lee Courtaulds
PR Team: Jackie Cooper PR
Campaign: Launch of 'Ego Boost' bra
Timescale: May - Feb 2002
One in three UK women wear M&S underwear, but the brand was missing a
share in the push-up bra market.
Clothing supplier Sara Lee Courtaulds (SLC) came on board with the 'Ego
Boost' bra, which has three variations - 'cheeky, naughty and wicked' -
to 'suit a woman's mood'.
To give the bra 'personality' and thereby increase sales.
Strategy and Plan
Jackie Cooper PR plumped for a celebrity campaign featuring Claire
Sweeney, who came to fame playing Lindsey in Channel 4's Brookside, as a
After her appearance on Celebrity Big Brother earlier this year, it was
felt she had endeared herself to the public as a down-to-earth star,
sharing the qualities of the M&S brand.
Shots of Sweeney wearing the product with a 'cheeky grin' were plastered
around the store in window displays, on counters, etc.
A vehement M&S fan herself, Sweeney was the perfect endorser in
interviews, while her recent celebrity status guaranteed media attention
and wide coverage.
Linking the Ego Boost launch into Claire's upcoming role as the
dare-devil presenter on ITV's new series Challenge of a Lifetime, she
abseiled down the M&S store on London's Kensington High Street to
kick-start the campaign.
Measurement and Evaluation
On launch day, Sweeney was interviewed on Channel 4 show Big Breakfast
and on radio station Heart FM.
Considerable coverage was achieved in women's magazines, for example
Marie Claire, along with plenty of regional coverage, particularly in
her home city, Liverpool.
There was, however, media criticism that the abseiling stunt held up
traffic - and no-one got to see the bra.
In terms of sales, the Ego Boost has averaged £400,000 a week
sales, equating to around seven bras sold every minute.
M&S wanted to capture around 15 per cent of the push-up bra market. The
bra currently holds 24.6 per cent of the market.
This marks a success as the retailer last week unveiled its new
womenswear range, Per Una.