The second key insight, derived from historical sales data, was that consumers are more inclined to take medicated preventative measures only in the winter colds-and-flu season.
The Euro RSCG team was tasked with changing the target market's existing usage behaviour, thus gaining market share from Strepsils' primary competitor, a well-known confectionery manufacturer.
“The campaign had a twofold message,” says James Daniels, creative director. “First was that minor dry, tickly or scratchy throats have the potential to turn into something more serious, even outside of the winter months when consumers traditionally expect sore throats. The second was that because of this imminent threat, consumers should use a trusted, medicated throat lozenge rather than just a regular candy, which only masks the symptoms.
“The creative idea developed was to get on top of your scratchy throat with Strepsils, before the full-blown sore throat gets you,” he says.
Aiming at LSM 8-10 urban consumers, who are confident self-medicators with a proactive approach to everyday health issues, the team developed an out-of-season, summer-oriented execution, called “Surfer”.
The commercial shows Mr T enjoying a day in the sunshine with his friends, in a typical summer scenario. Consumers' current habit of using throat candies was directly countered both visually and through the voice over, driving home the point that confectionery products are not the answer. A comparative product demonstration then gave consumers clear reasons why Strepsils are better than regular throat candies.
“The creative idea was succinctly captured in the campaign line of ‘Don't reach for throat sweets. Stop a tickle before it becomes trouble'. This line included both a call to action and the promise of the consumer benefit, which is preventing the development of a sore throat,” explains Daniels.
The campaign utilised TV, radio, print and outdoor as the primary drivers, with creative elements being applied to below-the-line in-store and promotional materials to enable on-the-ground promotion of the brand.Campaign exceeds all objectives
“Surfer” not only achieved but exceeded all its objectives. Net revenue grew by 30%, compared to 11% in the same period the year before. Market share grew by 400 basis points in value and volume was exceeded by 100 to 150 basis points.
The campaign also successfully reduced the brand's dependence on winter sales, dropping it by 10% for the same period the previous year. Finally, Strepsils' out-of-season growth target was exceeded by 100%.Euro RSCG's winning team:
- Account director: Ursula McAlpine
- Account executive: Mirelle Swartz
- Strategic planner: Angela Ferreira
- Creative director: James Daniels
- Art director: Romy Lunz
- Copywriter: Sarah Keevy