Pret A Manger – genderless gingerbread
When Pret CEO Clive Schlee received a letter from a young girl asking why there were no ‘gingerbread girls’ available in its stores, the sandwich-shop chain responded by changing the product to gender-neutral ‘gingerbread biscuits’.
The move appeared to divide the nation, inducing plenty of ‘the world’s gone mad’-type fuming. But Pret’s simple and clever response brought plenty of publicity and helped position it as a progressive company in tune with topical issues.
HTC – Kardashian parody
A parody of Kim Kardashian’s selfie obsession helped Hope&Glory promote its client, smartphone maker HTC. Gemma Collins from The Only Way is Essex recreated some of Kardashian’s most famous selfie poses in a campaign that generated more than 100 pieces of coverage, including in five national newspapers.
The Romford reality star posted pictures of herself mimicking the poses of her Californian counterpart to her Twitter and Instagram accounts, which have more than two million followers. The images went viral, resulting in more than 90,000 likes and over 4,000 comments. And the campaign even made it onto ITV’s Good Morning Britain, where showbiz correspondent Richard Arnold went naked to recreate one of Kardashian’s best-known selfies.
Become – #HotWomenOnly
The provocative campaign for clothing brand Become, by comms agency Mags Creative, uses a clever play on words to put it at the heart of a serious issue for many of its target customers.
In a nod to the controversial Protein World ‘Beach body ready’ ad from 2015, photographs of a slim model’s torso with slogans such as ‘Are you hot enough for us?’ are used in the campaign, which aims to break the stigma surrounding menopause and redefine what it means to be ‘hot’. Women were invited to enter a competition to model Become’s new brand of underwear, with the winner becoming the face of the brand.
Chess champion's right to remain
Thanks to this campaign, the decision to force a young chess champion and his family to leave the UK was overturned by the Home Secretary. Nine-year-old prodigy Shreyas Royal – who has lived in the UK since the age of three – was told he must return to India once his father’s work visa expired in September. Working with the English Chess Federation, and with the backing of several MPs, PR agency Brazil campaigned for an exemption to be made for Royal and his family. The boy became the spokesman of the campaign, even holding his own against John Humphrys on BBC Radio 4’s Today programme, generating a huge amount of coverage.
How do you become a chess grandmaster? Nine-year-old Sheryas Royal, the youngest ‘candidate master' in England tells us. Despite living here most of his life, his family might have to move back to India when his father’s visa runs out next month #r4Today pic.twitter.com/wf7l106JiU— BBC Radio 4 Today (@BBCr4today) 8 August 2018
Royal was invited to make the ceremonial first move at the upcoming World Championship match, a task usually reserved for senior officials or celebrities. The campaign led to Home Secretary Sajid Javid taking the "personal decision" to allow Royal and his family to stay under a new work visa. The pro-bono campaign was devised by Brazil. W devised and handled PR around the ceremonial first move.
Deliveroo recreates iconic NYC photo
The food-delivery brand ran a competition inviting members of the public to dine along a metal girder 450ft up in London, recreating the famous ‘Lunch Atop a Skyscraper’ image of workmen taking a break in New York City in 1932 – but this time, with safety harnesses.
The campaign, executed by agency Talker Tailor Trouble Maker, was launched to celebrate a 210 per cent increase in orders during the recent UK heatwave. It generated coverage across media outlets including the Daily Mail, Mirror and Metro. Deliveroo launched the sky-high meal after commissioning research that found millions of British workers have fallen into a cycle of boredom when it comes to office lunches.