Save the children Christmas jumper day [Friday 13th December]

I didn’t know, but apparently in the UK as in the US one of the Christmas fashion must haves is an ugly quirky possibly knitted jumper to wear at special occasions before the winter holiday such as University and Business Christmas parties or more specific “ugly Christmas sweater parties”. Since 2012, Save the children have contributed to the spread of this silliness organising their “Christmas Jumper Day”.

Christmas Jumper Day is an annual charity event that this year is going to happen on Friday 13th December, with 100% of the proceeds going to the charity Save the Children. The ONG aim is to convince as many people as possible to wear a Christmas jumper to work, school, the pub or even at home and spend some time together in a joyful and crazy environment.

Each participant at the event is asked to donate £2, sign up on the website and get the free special fundraising pack of this year, “crammed with everything you need to help make your Christmas Jumper Day fa(bauble)ous”: follow this link to know more and participate.
Here’s the 2018 funny advertising video.

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I’m not sure that on Friday I would have the courage to wear an improbable jumper with a Christmas theme on it, but I find this idea so cheerful that I’ll be seriously [how ironic] tempted. And you?

Ibis and the odd direct marketing

I couldn’t stop myself bringing this direct marketing campaign to your attention, even if I tried to forget about it and postpone it, but this is so odd and sort of funny, at the end I’ve decided to give in and share. Ibis, the famous hotel chain, in order to create awareness for one of their value added services – the Ibis business card – has created a very special offer for customers that own the card. Suspense.

Ibis is a hotel chain well known as specialised in business trip accommodation, so they often propose campaigns and loyalty services for business clients. One of the latest was a direct marketing campaign named “Dream apparel”.
Follow me carefully here because things are about to get sort of surreal.

Assuming that their clients sleep very well in their hotel rooms, they have the idea to offer their business customers a literally “taylor made” gift: in order to bring with them the comfort they experienced in their Ibis accommodation, the hotel will provide for the morning after a handmade tailored shirt made with [drumroll] a brand new sheet. I’m not joking, see for yourself!

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Honestly I have to say, this strategy grabs your attention for sure and maybe – after a good lough – it’s even appealing. Certainly the concept is original – at the edge of folly – and full of lateral thinking. But everything is very, very odd, don’t you think?

Art in your pocket

Missing holidays and all the art you could experience during your trips? Thanks to Paperwallet now you can bring a piece of art every day in your pocket and – most importantly – make good use of it. Here is the advertising campaign for the business and product idea behind the brand Paperwallet.

Paperwallet, as it couldn’t be clearer from the name, is a wallet made of paper and a memo of your favourite piece of art. The idea itself is great, very creative and original, even if so simple, but to find the right material for creating Paperwallet apparently was quite hard: it had to be very strong and durable, it must have the right weight, it needed to be water resistant and – preferably – eco-friendly. Curious to know how they chose it? Watch the video, it also includes a detailed description of all the amazing characteristics of this brilliant product.

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An innovative, well designed, inspiring and trendy product, and the ad created for the Kickstarter’s crowdfunding campaign is amazing, don’t you think?

Take a coffee with your neighbour [Tim Hortons]

Is everyone back from holiday? My blog is! As a good purpose for this restart of the year, I’ll follow the advice of Tim Hortons advertising campaign and take a coffee more often with one of my neighbours. The coffee brand have organised a social experiment in Canada using the “coffee’s power” and its brand experience convincing neighbours to “properly” meet and chat for the first time. The result is fantastic.

Nowadays our lifestyles are very often busy and quite stressful, and sometimes we feel we don’t have the time to build new relationships. In Canada people are usually described as friendly, but Tim Hortons discovered that 50% of them don’t know their neighbour, so they decided to organise a social experiment focused on building a fantastic brand experience on convincing neighbours to have a coffee together. Despite -5C degree and a bit of initial embarrassment, the operation went smoothly: you can have a look by yourself at the happy ending.

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Not really original – Nescafé have done something similar a bunch of times – but well organised and anyway very consistent with the brand identity. Well done Tim Hortons, and thank you for being such an inspiration. And you, are you going to follow the advice?

Other posts about brand experience

Marmite lover or hater

Since I moved to the UK – more than 3 years ago, actually – I’m always hearing about Marmite, but I’ve never had the courage to taste it, I don’t know exactly why [probably because the colour doesn’t appeal to me at all], but I know here it’s a sort of must-have of the kitchen, as important as a kettle to embrace the British culture. Anyway, I’ve always been curious about it and now I’ve discovered this funny advertising campaign that helps me better understand the success of this peculiar product.

If you ask “What does Marmite taste like?”, every Briton I know can’t really answer. What they usually say is “It’s Marmite. You love it or you hate it!”. The brand seems to be very aware of its peculiarity and in the advert I selected, it plays with this assumption, the fact that in a family the two factions of thought can coexist… and that situation can cause some “friction”. So, they have created the “Marmite gene project” in order to test the “Marmite attitude” of a person through a gene test. It might seem absurd, but apparently it isn’t! 😀

I love that commercial and the idea behind it: very creative, conscious of the brand identity and its targets’ perception, the advertising campaign shows all the power of the product using a good amount of irony, don’t you think?
I didn’t check if the Marmite gene test is still available, but I promise I’ll try it sooner or later and I’ll let you know if I’m a lover or not! 😉

Diversity in supermarket

In recent years the world seems to have gone mad and many countries – including UK and Italy, unfortunately – have developed “attitudes” that are not very inclusive towards diversity, be it in terms of gender, origin or lifestyle. I was looking for a good example able to show the reason why those “attitudes” are profoundly wrong and absurd when I bumped into the powerful ambient marketing activity organised some months ago by Edeka, a German supermarket chain. Curious? Read on!

Edeka‘s will was to take sides, to take part and position and to show how important and indispensable the presence of diversity is for a contemporary society. So, Edeka have had the idea to put into reality the narrow-minded vision so popular in recent years, and eliminate all the foreign products from their shelves. Have a look at the result for yourself!

Edeka couldn’t have found a more powerful statement than this. With this ambient marketing campaign activated in all their supermarkets, the meaning of diversity has been transformed into reality and Edeka made clear that diversity can give people much better supermarkets and much better society and lives.

Creative, strong and quite shocking, Edeka’s ambient marketing campaign underlines the amazing impact that a good metaphor can have and how sometimes one doesn’t need lots of words to make a point, a “little” action can be just as effective. Don’t you think?

P.S. Now, think carefully about Brexit…

Other posts about ambient marketing

Life translator

Wouldn’t it be amazing if we could have a sort of translator for all those situations in which it is quite difficult to understand specific jargon or simple subtexts in a discussion? Quicken Loans claim to have created an app that helps with mortgage understanding and they have launched their product using a very appealing and empathetic advertising campaign.

To understand a language you don’t speak it’s quite obvious you need a translator, but in case of jargon or expressions used in specific contexts this usually isn’t possible. Considering the difficulties to communicate when people aren’t accustomed to the use of a specific jargon, Quicken Loans have managed to explain the function of their mortgage app using those situations as a perfect metaphor for incommunicability, source of potential misunderstanding and bad choices. Nothing that a translator – or an app – cannot support and solve.

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Well-built message, appealing realisation… but now I’d like to have a life translator, wouldn’t you?

Wash your hands… and your book

Angfa, a Japanese soap company, has had an admirable and sophisticated idea. In order to communicate the importance of hygiene and in particular of washing hands to the children of Cambodia, they’ve created a very special book for them.

Helped by technology, Angfa have had the opportunity to build up a very special social campaign using a direct marketing strategy. Considering that “in developing countries 6,000 kids die every day from infectious diseases transmitted by dirty hands, such as pneumonia and malaria, they have published and distributed – starting with Cambodia – “The washable book”, an amazing peculiar book where the pages take on colour when washed, teaching the importance of hand-washing at the same time. The results have been unbelievable.

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An amazing way for a company to take and show social responsibility. Angfa demonstrate that caring for people and their environment doesn’t necessarily mean renouncing a profit, don’t you agree?

Enjoy the winter sales

Thanks to winter sales, it’s shopping time! As a reminder – not that it’s truly necessary! 😉 – I’d like to share the social media campaign of Băneasa Shopping City, a Romanian mall. The brand has had the idea to organise a fashion experiment using Instagram in order to better understand how people choose their daily style. Interested? Keep going!

For their fashion experiment, Băneasa Shopping City hired Alexa and David, two attractive guys, probably models. For each of them the brand has created two different Instagram accounts, one showing them with a consistent look every day for 30 days, while in the other they have been pictured daily with a different style. They took a total of 742 photos on which the followers could like and comment on each outfit. Here’s the video.

The experiment idea was quite interesting and the development of the creativity very professional, but the results aren’t so appealing – or completely clear, don’t you think? And do you prefer to wear clothes with a consistent style or something new and different every day? Anyway, with the winter sale in either case you have the chance to buy something you like, don’t you?