Unilever Promo, Case study WALMART SOUNDCHECK

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Industry Business equipment & services, Corporate Image
Media Promo & PR, Case study
Market United States
Released February 2009

Credits & Description

Category: Best Use of Branded Content
Advertiser: UNILEVER
Date of First Appearance: Mar 1 2009 12:00AM
Entrant Company: LUNCHBOX, Culver City, USA
Entry URL: http://soundcheck.walmart.com/
Media placement: In-Store TV - Performance + Promos - Throughout Walmart US Stores - HDTV Wall And Checkout TVs - 13/04/09 - 16/01/10
Media placement: Social Media - Various Influencers And Social Networking Sites Including Bloggers, Flickr, Face - 01/03/09 - 01/01/10
Media placement: Entertainment Magazine Ads - Country Weekly, Us Weekly, People - 20/04/09 - 12/10/09
Media placement: Online Media Placements - Throughout Walmart.com And On External Sites - 10/03/09 - 26/01/10
Media placement: In-Store Signage - Security Shrouds And Floor Panel In The Electronics Section Of Walmart Stores - 17/03/09 - 26/01/10
Media placement: In-Store Mechandising - PDQ - Health And Beauty Section Of Walmart Stores, Nationwide - 17/03/09 - 26/01/10
Media placement: In-Store Merchandising - Permanent End Cap - Health And Beauty Section Of Walmart Stores, Nationwide - 17/03/09 - 26/01/10

Results and Effectiveness
Walmart Music had an average of over 23% lift on digital and physical sales of featured artists. The promotion was tied to over $200MM in Unilever sales with $20MM incremental sales directly related to the program. A market basket analysis has shown a higher instance of music sales and the promoted personal care in the same basket. A custom research program was completed and showed significant lifts in unaided brand and category awareness, purchase intent, intent to recommend and specific brand equity attributes. Traffic to the Soundcheck site has grown an average of 10% from month to month.

Creative Execution
An original music performance series was created to act as a platform for promoting Unilever’s top personal care brands and today’s top music artists. Artist selection and product paring were carefully chosen throughout the year to match the specific brand’s target audience. Original content - including performances, interviews and behind-the-scenes footage - was filmed, edited and made available only on Walmart.com and in Walmart stores. The artist and brand pairing was threaded through online media placements, in-store signage, in-store merchandising (including an innovative permanent end cap in over 2500 stores), print ads and social media to reach the target demographic and develop a loyal, invested following for the program, increasing brand and artist exposure. In addition to the official Soundcheck social media channels, artists promote their performances on their through official sites and social media outlets including Twitter, Flickr and Facebook, driving their fans to the Unilever-branded site.

Insights, Strategy & the Idea
Soundcheck is a cross-channel marketing program created to increase awareness of Unilever Personal Care products and New Release music online and in-store at Walmart. The program is a comprehensive out-of-store recruitment and in-store engagement tool that connects Walmart stores and Walmart.com together (Multi-Channel Merchandising Model) through the seamless integration of personal care products in an online music platform. With music sales declining across the board, the challenge was to find a way to bring legacy physical customers into the online channel while simultaneously increasing brand equity and customer acquisition for both the retailer and Unilever. With music labels looking for new ways to market artists, creating a branded original content platform provides an opportunity for them to reach an audience with minimal marketing dollars while the personal care brands benefit from being paired with top music acts.