The Chinese consumer market experiences its toughest period of competition during the Chinese New Year period, when every major international and local brand competes across categories, trying to get their slice of China’s enormous pie. As Chinese consumers are busy with journey home, preparations for family meals and gift giving. The idea was to launch a campaign that would resonate with the mass during this crucial period. The solution was a campaign called ‘Bring Happiness Home’ – the idea of returning home during the festive period and bringing happiness home.
The campaign kicked off with a 10-minute mini-movie premiere in cinemas and officially launched after that through online, print and PR, OOH, cinema and online activation as well as TV. The ambitious project started six months early and involved several agency partners and an assembly of stars studded casts i.e. Zhou Xun, Louis Koo, Zhang Guoli, Show Lou and Angela Zhang for the filming of not only TVC, but the mini-movie as well.
Within two weeks following the launch of the mini-movie online, video viewership broke the 120 million mark, ending at 700 million viewership. In addition, in the first two weeks more than nine million people searched for the theme ‘Bring Happiness Home’ in China’s largest search engine Baidu and the talkability of the campaign went through the roof in Sina Weibo (China’s version of Twitter) with five million discussions, conversations and news-related citing online that generate more than US$2.8 million worth of media coverage.
On March 11, 2011, the people of Northern Japan experienced one of the greatest disasters known to mankind, resulting in 100,000 evacuees displaced to shelters to live for weeks and months without running water, proper sewage and clean clothes. While relief organisations cared for their survival needs, P&G and its agency set out to take care of the more profound need among survivors to feel clean, to get back to being themselves, and to feel hope for the future. This was an opportunity for Ariel to rise above charity and provide more than material relief.
This was not an advertising campaign — it was a Laundry Movement; a special project called ‘Ariel Cheers for You’ to deliver freshly washed clothing to disaster victims. There were no traditional advertisements, but through the use of traditional media and innovative participation programmes on Facebook and at retail, P&G delivered tangible results both for the shelter victims and even for the Ariel brand. It built a laundry center in a neighboring prefecture with sewage and water. It hired a fleet of trucks to move laundry between the shelters and the center. And it washed clothes. Continuously. For nearly six months. Overall, it washed, dried and folded nearly 5,000 loads of laundry, including 22,000 clothing items. It provided desperately needed freshly washed clothes, and, with them, a sense of comfort, cleanliness, and hope.
Thousands of people across the nation showed support for the program on Facebook, Twitter and other media. Free publicity was generated on TV, in newspapers, and online. The unpaid media exposure was equivalent to US$4,300,000. The multi-segment marketing programme was the most successful in P&G Japan history. 16,834 retail stores nationwide participated. The 10-week programme resulted in 168 per cent increase in sales of P&G products compared to the same period one-year earlier.