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Publicity Stunts

The new face of Southern Rail and hero to us all: Eddie the work experience kid!

Posted on July 13th, 2017 in brand PR,Comedy,Consumer PR,creative publicity,Leisure PR,PR Stunt,Publicity Stunts,Stunt Of The Day,Travel PR.

It’s been a tough past year for Southern Rail, but their delegation of duties to one of their new employees has turned things around for the company on social media. 15 year old Eddie was put in charge of the rail company’s Twitter and brightened the days of commuters across the country with his polite and funny responses to users’ increasingly bizarre and outlandish questions. His charming social media temperament even landed him an interview on BBC Radio 1 with Scott Mills and reams of media coverage, with people totally endeared by his efforts.

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Eddie assisted the public with all manner of questions, from film recommendations, to what he thinks about pineapple on pizza, who will win Love Island and even answering a few train-related enquiries along the way. It was a light-hearted change to the generic enquiries and complaints experienced by any train company’s Twitter account. Southern Rail employees recognised Eddie’s talent for social engagement and even put him back on tweeting duty the following day to keep up his good work. His original tweet introducing himself received almost 2,000 retweets and 6,000 likes and from there, people were hooked on his tweets and he became somewhat of a viral sensation, with thousands of people engaging with the Southern Rail page.
Here’s a selection of our favourite pearls of wisdom from Eddie:

_96906141_-simonrobb85eddie-1 eddie-2 eddie-3 eddie-4

-@emclarks_n

25 Top Creative Campaigns at Cannes Lions 2017

Posted on June 30th, 2017 in Awards PR,Cannes Lions,Consumer PR,PR Stunts,Publicity Stunts,Roundup,Stunt Of The Day.

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Last week the most creative minds in marketing, media and tech congregated again in France to attend the annual Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity. This year there was a grand total of 41,170 entries received across the 24 Lions so once again we have sifted through the campaigns to bring you our top 25 (in no particular order).  Enjoy!

#1 FEARLESS GIRL

Taking home the PR Grand Prix, the Fearless Girl was created to symbolise the power of female leadership designed to stand the test of time. The statue, installed in time for International Women’s Day, shows a young bold girl standing defiantly in front of the pre-existing bull on Wall Street.

[McCann NY for State Street Global Advisors]

#2 CHEETOS MUSEUM

Cheeto’s championed the individual nature of their snack product’s design by challenging its customers to find the most interesting Cheeto’s in shapes ranging from guitars and seahorses to Abraham Lincoln for inclusion in possibly the strangest museum to date. With the addition of a $60,000 cash incentive to enter they received well over 120 thousand submissions.

[Goodby Silverstein & Partners for Cheetos]

#3 GOOGLE SHEEP VIEW

On a small island where there are more sheep than people it is unsurprising that the Faroe Islands had not yet been mapped by Google Street View. To combat this they enlisted some of their wooly residents, with the help of some 360 cameras, to map out the gorgeous countryside and show off the natural beauty of the region.

[Liquid Minds for Visit Faroe Islands and Atlantic Airways]

#4 MEET GRAHAM

In “Meet Graham” we are introduced to a rather strange looking gentleman to say the least. But his peculiar stature is what makes Graham so special as he demonstrates how the human body would have to evolve to survive serious car accidents.

[Clemenger BBDO Melbourne for Transport Accident Commission Victoria]

#5 IMPOSSIBLE SIGNING SESSION

To those of us who worship the late literary greats, long since deceased, owning a signed copy of their work is either a distant day dream or an endeavour due to set us back thousands. To make some of these dreams a realisation Bol.com created a robotic arm with software designed to learn and mimic an author’s individual handwriting delivering signatures so accurate even experts struggled to tell the difference.

[DDB Brussels for BOL.com]

#6 LIKE MY ADDICTION

“Louise Delange’s” Instagram upon first glace appears to show a picture perfect life, from boat parties to sunny afternoons relaxing on the poolside it soon racked up quite a following. But upon closer inspection an unsettling pattern starts to emerge, in each of the images posted “Louise” is seen holding some sort of alcoholic drink.

[BETC for Addict Aide]

#7 UNSAFETY CHECK

In a week that started with Martin Luther King day and ended with the highly divisive inauguration of Donald Trump as president of the United States, Black lives Matter launched a new web app – an inverted version of Facebook’s “Mark yourself safe” feature was created to highlight the levels of fear felt within the black community and the racism they face on a day to day basis.
Warning this video contains unsettling images.

[J. Walter Thompson New York for Black Lives Matter]

#8 SPANISH LESSONS

Started by an offhand remark by a fan on social media Netflix recognised the potential of their hit show Narcos to teach its audience Spanish. Delivered by some of the stars of the show several episodes were uploaded breaking down phonetically certain words and sentences common to the show. Mainly this involved slightly bluer phrases such as “malditos Malparidos” which if you would like to know the meaning of you can watch the case video below.

[Alma DDB for Netflix]

#9 IKEA RESPONDS TO BALENCIAGA

Another piece of great reactive PR came from IKEA who noticed that the latest and very expensive Balenciaga bag bore an uncanny resemblance to their much, much cheaper and incredibly practical Frakta bag. With a gloriously tongue in cheek tone they responded in most fashionable way possible with a guide on how identify a genuine original Frakta bag.

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[ACNE for IKEA]

#10 TWO GUYS GO TO THE CINEMA

In response to the Spanish Government charging 21% VAT to cinema goers but only 10% to those viewing stage plays Texas Cinemes decided to stage a play within a screening and refund their audience the difference. As a result more than 120,000 signatures were collected for the cause.

[The Cyranos / McCann for Cinemes Texas]

#11 NUGGS FOR CARTER

It all started with a tweet from Carter Wilkerson asking what it would take to get free chicken nuggets and the benchmark set by Wendy’s of 18 million that set off this epic campaign which came to be known as Nuggs for Carter. With huge brands such as Apple and Microsoft lending their support to the underdog Carter the real winner was Wendy’s who saw their social media engagement and publicity soar in the fallout of the teen’s tweet.


[VML for Wendy’s]

#12 ON HOLD MUSIC FESTIVAL

The most listened to music in Brazil is not Samba or Bossa Nova as you might think, instead it is the ear-worm inducing tones of the on hold themes used by major corporations with many callers spending over 30 minutes being driven to insanity by the sheer monotony. To pay some of these companies back Grey Brazil enlisted the help of some of the biggest names in Spanish music to blast live version of these tunes outside the offices, turning the tables and giving them a taste of their own medicine.

[Grey Brazil for Reclame Aqui]

#13 PRESIDENT OF PLAYLISTS

Off the back of former President Barack Obama’s comment that he was hoping for a job at Spotify after leaving his post the company put a specialised job posting up online seeking a “President of Playlists” with the criteria paying tribute to Mr Obama and highlighting many of the great achievements he has accomplished.


[Spotify]

#14 BRAILLE BRICKS

To encourage inclusion and an understanding of the blind in young children The Dorina Nowill Foundation of the Blind has created Braille Bricks. These small bricks make up a full braille alphabet to help facilitate the acquisition of literacy skills in the visually impaired all the while creating a fun educational and inclusive activity for all.

[LEW’LARA \ TBWA BRAZIL for Dorina Nowill Foundation for the Blind]

#15 KISS THE KREMLIN

Thanks to Russia’s laws it is becoming increasingly difficult and dangerous for open protests especially regarding LGBT issues. To get around this SSEX BBOX held a virtual protest in possibly the most political places in Russia, the Kremlin. Thousands photographed images of same-sex love and geo-tagged their location to the site of the Kremlin. During the week of the protest instead of images of the building tourists using Instagram saw thousands of images of kisses from all over the globe.

[DM9DBB for SSEX BBOX]

#16 SECOND LIFE TOYS

Transplantation is always a sensitive subject, especially with children. With an international shortage, particularly evident in Japan the Green Ribbon Project Committee set out to destigmatise and raise awareness of this growing issue. Taking well-loved toys with missing or broken limbs they created a toy translation service in which unwanted toys were donated and used to repair the beloved play things. In return the receiver would send a personal letter of thanks to their donor directly rewarding them for their kind actions.

[Dentsu Inc. for Green Ribbon Project Committee]

#17 WOMAN INTERRUPTED

The app Woman Interrupted was created to coincide with International Women’s day and tracks how often in a conversation a woman is interrupted by a man. It was conceived in the wake of the Hilary x Trump campaign which saw Mr Trump repeatedly interrupting his opponent.

[BETC for Woman Interrupted]

#18 WHOPPER EXCHANGE

On Boxing Day last year Burger King unveiled their answer on what to do with unwanted Christmas gifts. The first 500 people to turn up to the Leicester Square branch were given the opportunity to swap their unwelcome presents for a Whopper with all accepted gifts donated to charity.

[AKQA for Burger King]

#19 NOTFAIRBNB

Two statistics mirrored each other last year, as the number of people offering spare rooms and properties on Airbnb doubled so too did the number of homeless from 2600 to 5400 in Brussels along. Thus the notion of notfairbnb was born – on the surface it is a carbon copy of the traditional Airbnb website but instead of fancy penthouses and traditional terraced home it shows real areas around the city where the homeless are forced to sleep.

[TBWA/Belgium for Solidarite Grands Froids]

#20 HUNGERITHM

Building on the company’s message of “you’re not you when you’re hungry” the Hungerithm was developed, an algorithm that monitors the general sentiment of the internet. Simply put, the angrier the internet gets, the lower the price of a Snickers bar in participating 7-Eleven stores.

[Clemenger BBDO Melbourne for Mars Chocolate Australia]

#21 LITBAITS

Clickbait material is everywhere, so the Wild Detectives decided to produce some of their own for the greater good. Stories started appearing across their social media subtly describing the plots of famous novels disguised as news stories with a traditionally sensational clickbait style title. If someone was to follow the link they would be directed to a web page with full digital access of the novel for them to read.

[DIESTE USA for The Wild Detectives]

#22 GET THE FLOW

In “Get the Flow” Vodafone explores the power of hip hop on people suffering with a stutter and follows the story of Mitch as he works on an interactive app for the company allowing stutters around the word to use rap to improve their fluency.

[DDB & Tribal Worldwide Amsterdam for Vodafone]

#23 THE ONE MOMENT

OK Go are renowned for their intricately choreographed music videos with many being a viral sensation and their video for The One Moment was no different. It features a number of spectacularly fleeting practical effects exploding, popping and booming around the musical members with some very subtle product placement from Morton Salt in the background. The partnership was created to launch Morton Salt’s Walk her walk campaign, with the popularity of the video it catapulted the brand’s key messaging into a trending topic on twitter and vastly increasing brand awareness.

[Ogilvy & Mather USA for Morton Salt]

#24 TALK TO ME

The creative idea behind the campaign Talk to Me stemmed from research into the positive effects familial voices can make on comatose patients, however due to restrictions on visiting times alongside the pressures of work and travel implications bed side conversations are not always possible. Thus Panasonic devised a working one way phone line installed on special retractable arms and positioned to the sides of the patient’s bed so friends and family could call at any time and hopefully help to facilitate a speedier recovery.

[Maruri Grey Ecuador for Panasonic]

#25 GRANDMA-TESTED GOODNESS

With sentiments towards pre-packaged treats becoming increasingly negative in a growing health conscious world Ferrero called upon some of the harshest critics to assess their products… Grandmas. They were invited down to the factory with more than 6 million following their adventures online resulting in a mass amelioration of brand sentiment and over 82% likability across social platforms.

[STVDDB for Ferrero]

Man bun alert! Mattel gives their Ken Doll a 2017 Diversity Makeover

Posted on June 22nd, 2017 in Consumer PR,FMCG,Kids PR,PR Stunt,Publicity Stunts,Retail PR,Stunt Of The Day,Toy PR.

We all like a good makeover now and again, whether that means changing the colour or style of our hair, or updating our wardrobes to treat ourselves to a fresh look. Now, Mattel have decided to apply this same concept to Barbie’s Beau, Ken. Since the birth of Ken in 1961, his appearance has hardly shifted from the conventional characteristics of tanned, blonde and muscular. But in 2017, Mattel felt it was necessary to reform the limiting framework of Ken’s image. New and improved Ken now comes in 15 different variations, with three body types, seven skin tones and nine hairstyles. One version of Millennial Ken even has a man bun, while another sports some cornrows. Similarly, Ken’s new garments include skinny jeans, high-top trainers, and vibrant-coloured shirts and vests, in an effort to make him look more like the young men of today’s generation.

ken-doll-2017

Various celebrities have taken to twitter to comment on Ken’s new makeover; Emily Jashinsky specifically writing, ‘Does man bun Ken doll also come with a Soul Cycle membership, vintage record player, and 50,000 in student loan debt?’

Mattel’s revival of Ken’s appearance follows similar updates that the company made to Barbie last year, and now both characters represent a variety of body shapes and skin tones. Personally, I think this is a very effective way of making children more open to diverse appearances. Additionally, kids can be inspired by a wide range of styles through their favourite dolls, and no longer have to feel like they are confined to following one ‘fashionable’ look. With all these changes, we’re already anticipating the next phase of Ken’s evolution.

– @georgielmw

Pirates arrive on British Coastline

Posted on May 25th, 2017 in Event PR,Experiential Marketing,Film PR,PR Stunt,PR Stunts,publicity stunt agency,Publicity Stunts,Stunt Of The Day,Taylor Herring News,Taylor Herring PR.

Tourists and visitors to Britain’s coastline were left stunned today as they stumbled across a series of pirate sculptures emerging from the sea.

 The pirate statues were spotted on Brighton Beach, at Birling Gap and the Seven Sisters in Eastbourne and at HMNB Portsmouth Harbour.

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 The unique art installation has been unveiled by Walt Disney Studios to launch the new film ‘Pirates of the Caribbean: Salazar’s Revenge’, which opens in cinemas today.

 The sculptures were installed under the cover of night and were revealed at low tide the following morning. The two-metre-high statues portray the new characters from the film – the crew of the fearsome Spanish pirate-hunter Captain Salazar (played by Javier Bardem) and his shipmates Magda and Lasaro. 

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 The figurines specially commissioned by Disney, stunned dog-walkers along Eastbourne’s iconic Birling Gap and the Seven Sisters chalk cliffs. Beachgoers enjoying a spot of sunshine were given a surprise on Brighton beach, whilst Naval officers and fishermen at Portsmouth Harbour looked on curiously as they spotted the sculptures bursting from the sea.

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The figures were created by a dedicated team of sculptors who took six weeks to build the swashbuckling statues. The intricate designs were painted and sculpted by hand, featuring life-like attributes with flowing hair and accurate costumes from the film.

Legendary Hollywood producer, Jerry Bruckheimer, commented: “The UK has always had a special place within the Pirates of the Caribbean history having filmed here many times. Therefore, it is a fitting tribute to have the fearsome crew of our terrifying new villain, Captain Salazar, descend on the shorelines of Great Britain to celebrate the launch of the new film.”

The fifth film in the Pirates of the Caribbean franchise, Pirates of the Caribbean: Salazar’s Revenge follows the legendary Captain Jack Sparrow, as he returns to the seas to face his old nemesis Salazar, a pirate captain who has escaped the Devil’s Triangle and is determined to kill every pirate at sea. Captain Jack is joined by old and new acquaintances to help him on his latest quest to find the powerful trident of Poseidon.

 

Pirates of the Caribbean: Salazar’s Revenge is released in cinemas nationwide today.

It’s renting but not as you know it: Sweden lists entire country on Airbnb

Posted on May 24th, 2017 in brand PR,Consumer PR,Experiential Marketing,Leisure PR,PR Stunt,Publicity Stunts,Stunt Of The Day,Tourism PR,Travel PR.

sweden-on-airbnb

It looks like the Swedish Tourism board have hit the meatballs on the head once again. We’ve had ‘The Swedish Number’ back in 2016 – a number that allowed absolutely everyone, at any time, in any place to ring it and be randomly connected with a Swede. Swedish residents who signed up received no training, had been given no instructions or guidance but told to give a true account of where they lived. As some would argue, this was a bold, brave move in a world of overly manufactured tourism work. But they’ve now moved on to even bigger things, they’ve united with Airbnb and listed their whole country on the famous accommodation booking website.

From the country that is more known for renditions of ‘Mamma Mia’ and flat pack furniture, the goal of this campaign is to clearly show off some of the lesser known natural beauties and Swedish mantras of free movement as it proudly states how it allows anyone to camp, cycle, run or walk on any part of the land in accordance with the Swedish principle of “Allemansrätten”.

There are a total of nine different listings, which range from breath taking ocean views by the National Park of Skuleskogen to the famous rich greenery of the forests in Varmland. Each contains a whimsical tongue in cheek approach to the typical Airbnb format listing “unlimited beds” and “Open-plan” rooms along with “real Air Conditioning”.

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Although this advertisement is to encourage tourists to explore these areas of natural beauty, it does also list places to stay at the bottom, in the traditional Airbnb format. Whilst we must still pay homage to Sweden for the cinnamon bun, as well as being the provider of all our vital furniture needs, it appears Sweden has a lot more than meets the eye.

If your interest is piqued you can check out the listings for yourself here.

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