Product Brand Development Campaign of the Year 2011

Sponsored by Carmichael Lynch Spong


Ketchum West and Mattel/Barbie: After 125 Careers, Barbie Gets Her Geek On

Last year, for the first time in the Barbie brand's history, Mattel let consumers select a new career for her. More than 1 million consumers voted online, and Computer Engineer Barbie was a winner. The vote was backed up by a smart campaign. It stressed serious career aspiration and continued engaging audiences online and via media relations. On a budget of less than $250,000, the effort contributed to a 144% sales increase for the "I Can Be" line.

"A creative approach to keep a beloved icon fresh and relevant while connecting to the strategy of inspiring and empowering girls," said one judge. "A great example of building a brand and keeping it top-of-mind and relevant to this next generation."

"Smart, engaging, and unexpected," said a second judge. A third praised the "clever idea," and also noted "good brand positioning" and widespread coverage.

Indeed, the team did a fantastic job expanding coverage beyond the typical lifestyle and parent outlets - first by piquing tech media interest with invitations to the 2010 New York Toy Fair press conference where Computer Engineer Barbie was unveiled. Outlets covering the story included Wired, Gizmodo, and PC World.

Consumer engagement launched with a global survey and was sustained through daily posts by Barbie on her Facebook, Twitter, and blog pages, as well as through "direct-to-girl/mom marketing" tactics. The Society of Women Engineers and the National Academy of Engineering were enlisted to help create an authentic look for the doll and identify a spokesperson.

The campaign garnered more than 1.1 billion impressions in outlets including Today, Good Morning America, CNN, The New York Times, and Redbook. Social media reach extended to nearly 450,000 Facebook fans and 17,945 Twitter followers.

Honorable Mention: Edelman and Weber Shandwick and PepsiCo: Refreshing Change: Pepsi Refresh Project 2010 Brings Good Ideas to Life

The Pepsi Refresh Project brought cause marketing to the public by awarding more than $20 million in grants to fulfill consumer-generated ideas to improve communities. "Using consumer ideas to make a difference in the community with Pepsi's support is brilliant," said one judge. Results include more than 13.5 million unique visitors to (January to August); more than 10,000 ideas submitted; and more than 61 million votes cast (by mid- December 2010). Audience impressions exceeded 2.65 billion in eight months (nearly 12 times the goal).

The Award

Honors outstanding success in the ongoing development, repositioning, reinvigoration, or relaunch of an established consumer brand (either a product or a service) through the use of PR.

Finalists 2011

Atomic PR and Polaroid: Polaroid Goes Gaga at CES

Dig Communications and Blue Moon Brewing Co.: A Once in a Blue Moon New Year's Eve

Edelman and Butterball: Butterball Celebrates Thanksgiving with Value

Edelman and Weber Shandwick and PepsiCo: Refreshing Change: Pepsi Refresh Project 2010 Brings Good Ideas to Life

Ketchum West and Mattel/ Barbie: After 125 Careers, Barbie Gets Her Geek On

Sponsor: Carmichael Lynch Spong is a full-service firm that ignites and sustains momentum for a select portfolio of blue-chip clients. As a testament to the work the agency does on behalf of its clients, Carmichael Lynch Spong is proud of its 300-plus award-winning campaigns. The agency is also the industry's three-time recipient of the "Agency of the Year" award by national trade journals PRWeek and The Holmes Report.

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