12 January 2015
Caroline Walker, Account Manager

Five of 2014's most successful PR campaigns

Monty the Penguin – John Lewis Christmas Advert – PR Campaign


As we start a New Year, it’s always worth taking time to look back over the last 12 months to examine the successes, which in turn inform our planning. Here we reflect on what we see as the top five most memorable campaigns from 2014 and detail why they worked so well.


1) The Royal Selfie from Notonthehighstreet

For a modern Mother’s Day campaign, quirky online retailer Notonthehighstreet, used Britain’s most famous family and 2014’s favourite photography trend. To celebrate the Duchess of Cambridge’s first Mothering Sunday the retailer released the first public royal family selfie. The picture saw a group of royal lookalikes crowd around “the Queen’s” iPhone, complete with Corgi cover and the resulting pictures grabbed headlines in consumer magazines Glamour and Hello! as well as Daily Mail and Daily Mirror.

Read more here >


2) Paddy Power’s World Cup stunt

Big sporting events are synonymous with huge marketing campaigns and Paddy Power’s campaign for the World Cup in Brazil was no exception. The betting company caused a stir and uploaded an aerial image, which showed the phrase, “C’mon England PP”, cut into the host country’s famous Amazon rainforest. The initial image caused outcry from followers believing that Paddy Power had cut down trees before it was revealed, with another picture, that the image was created digitally. The photos were part of a wider campaign run in conjunction with Greenpeace and were devised to draw attention to the deforestation occuring in the Amazon.

The bookmaker has always run advertising and PR campaigns that are a little close to the bone and actually used this campaign to turn its reputation on its head by using this shocking stunt to highlight a poignant issue – it also gained widespread media coverage including Daily Mirror and The Independent in the process!

Read more here>


3) The ALS ice bucket challenge

The Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS) Association was catapulted to stardom via a simple, but effective, ice bucket challenge. This internet sensation saw everyone’s Facebook feed filled with embarrassing videos of people being drenched with buckets full of freezing cold water to mimic the effects of the disease. This summer, the campaign raised awareness and funds for the charity and also secured media coverage in almost all of the national newspapers as celebrities undertook the challenge. Between 29 July and 28 August 2014 the ALS Association received $98.2 million, compared to $2.7 million donated over the same period in 2013. We want to celebrate the campaign’s simplicity and crown it 2014’s biggest fundraising success!

Read more here>


4) Mr Kipling creates an edible billboard

The baker sculpted an enormous advertisement at Westfield shopping centre, from its popular baked goods. The final billboard featured favourites such as Fondant Fancies, Angel Slices and Bakewell Tarts and shortly after its construction was demolished by hungry shoppers. This PR stunt achieved coverage in publications such as the Daily Mail and the Metro due to its visual appeal and, as the Westgate team is very much a fan of baked goods, we took notice as the campaign spoke directly to our tummies!

Read more here>


5) Monty the Penguin

John Lewis centered last year’s heart-warming Christmas advert around a boy and his forlorn cuddly toy Monty. The creature was so adorable that he had his own Twitter account and hashtag, #montythepenguin, a rooftop winter wonderland at John Lewis’ flagship store in Oxford Street and even a range of merchandise including cufflinks, onesies and plush toys.

The campaign taught us that you can successfully work with children and animals (especially if they are animatronic!) and John Lewis has reported a prosperous festive season with sales up 6%. Well done Monty!

Watch it here >



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