Campaign of the Week – Lidl – #LidlSurpises
Campaign of the Week – Lidl, a masterclass in acknowledging, embracing and shifting negative brand perception.
The four major supermarkets in this country have long been embroiled in a price war that has lead to millions of pounds being poured into their respective marketing budgets.
However, it has been the impressive impact of challenger brands Aldi and Lidl that have really surprised us all and shaken up the market. I don’t think anyone could have predicted the share of the market that these brands would take, even from the premium ‘Queen of the Supermarkets’ – Waitrose.
The standout marketing activity for me has been that of Lidl. A fantastic and brave strategy born out of their agency TBWA that has seen their brand propelled from apologetic and pathetic, to proud and loud. It is no longer an embarrassment to shop at Lidl, in fact it has almost become fashionable and something to shout about.
By openly acknowledging the deep rooted, negative image of the brand, and suggesting that any positive interaction with Lidl should come as a surprise to the customer, displays a bold, honest and transparent image of the brand. ‘We know you think we’re a bit naff,but let us have the opportunity to show you we’ve up’d our game’.
The marketing team have invested into this idea and stuck with it, and have continued to use the concept of #LidlSurpises across all their marketing channels with impressive results.
As a brand who had previously relied upon the less-premium marketing approach of door drops and leafleting, by launching with a big money TV campaign (£20m) in September, this immediately presented the brand as a serious contender in this fiercely competitive market. A simple idea, well executed planted the seed of the #LidlSurprises campaign, with the only copy and call to action on the end-frame being that of the hashtag, thus driving all traffic onto social where the campaign has really flourished.
Users, delighted and surprised by their recent Lidl experience are now encouraged to share their story on Twitter using the hashtag. The marketing team have selected tweets that reinforce the original insight and have printed them onto POS banners in-store – really making this a fully integrated and connected campaign.
The figures speak for themselves, Lidl have seen their Twitter following grow from 3,400 in July to 12,746 at last count. Whilst there are over 300 images posted to Instagram using the hashtag – despite Lidl not even having their own account. But the real results can be found in the content of the tweets and the way in which customers talk about and defend the brand. There is a real sense of pride, and ‘Why shouldn’t I shop at Lidl?’
In addition to the successful social and TV elements of the campaign, there are other promotional delights to be found such as the online recipe generator www.lidlsurprises.co.uk and these fantastic grocery bags.
Further proof last week that the brand has a switched on marketing team, was the impressive quick thinking and response to the fatal error made by Sainsbury’s with their internal comms poster being displayed in store and embarrassingly going viral. This was an easy win for Lidl and has firmly ticked the PR box for them with the stunt generating endless columns of press coverage and re-igniting the buzz on social.
The past 6 months of activity and results from Lidl have proven that with the right thinking and investment of budget and ideas, a brand is capable of switching peoples perceptions. Brands can dramatically rise and fall andrise back again stronger than ever before, with enough persistence and by committing to a strong, single minded, clear proposition – just ask the team at Burberry.
What other brands have impressively ridden the wave of popularity? Tweet us @Gertrude&Ivy