11 of the best PR campaigns and activations of 2018 (according to you)

Each month PRWeek UK picks its top five PR and comms campaigns and asks you, our highly knowledgeable readers, to vote for your favourite. Below is a look back at each of the champions from 2018...

January: Valentine's dinner at Greggs

The first 'Five Campaigns' contest of the year was won – with 361 votes from a total of 916 – by Gregg's, which teamed up with OpenTable to offer couples a unique date experience on the 14 February. The campaign, by Taylor Herring, received widespread national coverage for the popular high-street baker.

February: Three Grenfell Billboards

An exciting battle between PRWeek's five favourite Feb campaigns was won – with more than half the total votes – by the #Justice4Grenfell campaigners, with their 'Three Billboards' inspired protest outside Parliament. The stunt was even praised by Frances McDormand at The Oscars. The campaign was run by BBH and PR firm Mc&T.

March: Malaria Must Die, So Millions Can Live

The twin talents of animation studio Aardman and actor Hugh Laurie were too much for challengers in March's hotly contested matchup. The Malaria Must Die, So Millions Can Live film, which took nearly half the total votes, humourously traced Malaria's history, calling on the 53 Commonwealth states to unite against the killer disease.

April: Hostelworld – Even Divas Are Believers

More than 2,600 people voted in April's contest, including nearly 1,800 who ticked the box for eventual winner Hostelworld. The hostel-booking website convinced legendary songstress and notorious diva Mariah Carey to star in a three-minute spoof film, which secured widespread coverage from Cosmopolitan to The Daily Mail. It was produced by Lucky Generals, with Hotwire looking after PR.

May: Ecover – The Rubbish Café

An exciting battle between PRWeek's five top May campaigns was eventually won by The Rubbish Café, by Ecover, with more than half the total number of votes. The pop-up, 'zero waste' venue – where consumers must pay for food using plastic rubbish – was open for two days in early May and used the Red Consultancy for PR.

June: Oasis – Togetherness

A thrilling tête-à-tête between PRWeek's five favourite campaigns in June was won convincingly by soft drinks brand Oasis, with its video send-up of bad cause marketing (hi, Pepsi), produced by The Corner, garnering an impressive 405 votes. The spot hit the right tone for the irreverent brand – and acted as a satirical warning for the marcoms industry.

July: NOW TV – #JurassicJeff

A slightly one-sided contest between PRWeek's five favourite campaigns in July was won at a canter by NOWTV's #JurassicJeff stunt. The Jeff Goldblum 'statue', produced by Fever PR, not only captured the public's imagination (alongside more than 100 separate pieces of global broadcast coverage), but ended up with than two thirds of the total number of votes in our poll.

August: Deliveroo recreates iconic NYC photo

Deliveroo's eye-catching recreation of the iconic 'Lunch Atop a Skyscraper’ photo emerged triumphant in the shootout between PRWeek's five favourite campaigns in August. Produced by agency Talker Tailor Trouble Maker, the food delivery distruptor's competition ended up with a dominant 396 votes in our poll – more than three quarters of the total number.

September: Vanarama and Prostate Cancer UK – MANarama

Our five favourite campaigns in September recognised a UK first: the only time an English Football division has changed its name as part of a PR campaign. Vanarama and Prostate Cancer UK's MANarama campaign, by Alpaca Communications, saw the the league's title sponsor give up its naming rights for a charitable cause mid-season, to celebrate the fact that Prostate Cancer UK is the first official charity partner of the National League.

October: WWF – Stop Wildlife Trafficking

The record-breaking battle between PRWeek's five favourite campaigns in October was won – with nearly 1,500 votes – by WWF's Stop Wildlife Trafficking. PR agency Manifest worked on a stunt in which an elephant (hologram) roamed around London, generating plenty of attention for the cause as it did so.

November/Christmas: #NotARetailStore - Twitter UK

A heavyweight contest between PRWeek's five favourite Christmas campaigns was won – with nearly 5,000 votes – by #NotARetailStore for Twitter UK. PR agency The Romans devised a campaign that made John Lewis - the American lecturer famed for being mistaken for the British retailer of the same name - the star of a cleverly thought out film for the social media network.

Working on any great campaigns for 2019? Email arvind.hickman@haymarket.com or rob.mckinlay@haymarket.com to get them featured in next year's Five Campaigns series...


PRWeek's Christmas campaign coverage can be found in one place – right here

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