Warc Prize shortlist announced

30 May 2012

LONDON/WASHINGTON: Campaigns from brands including Febreze, Dettol and Polident have all been named on the shortlist for the $10,000 Warc Prize for Innovation.

The Prize is a global competition offering $10,000 in cash for the best case study of communications innovation, involving any country, discipline, product sector or budget size. Warc subscribers can read the shortlisted papers here.

Febreze's entry discussed how its aircare range gained ground in an highly undifferentiated category. A "social experiment", where US consumers were blindfolded and sent into once smelly places that were transformed with Febreze, drove this effort.

Elsewhere, Polident, the denture adhesive, tackled limited awareness in Malaysia by creating a TV singing contest, "Kilauan Emas". The show was solely for competitors aged at least 45 years old, and boosted Polident's growth rate from 23% to 71%.

Another finalist for the Prize is an initiative developed by Lowe SSP3 to try and undermine FARC, the guerrilla group, in Colombia. By tapping into the feelings evoked by Christmas, it persuaded 331 members of the organisation to demobilise.

For its part, Rom, a Romanian chocolate bar, used patriotism to reverse a sales slump. It pretended a foreign firm had bought this long-established brand and was going give it "Stars and Stripes" packaging. The resulting outcry manged to re-engage shoppers.

Dettol's submission to the Prize detailed how Reckitt Benckiser's antispetic line championed its low-cost 25-cent bottle in China using an "army of real mothers with social influence" in small cities, yielding an expansion in shipments of 80%.

The final paper on the shortlist, Promote Iceland, challenged negative views following the banking crisis and eruption of the Eyjafjallajökull volcano by asking its citizens to spend 60 minutes online telling people overseas why their country "inspired" them.

Jonathan Mildenhall, Coca-Cola's vice president, global advertising strategy and content excellence, is chairing the judges. He said: "These six shortlisted cases demonstrate that innovation today is truly border-less, found from Malaysia to Colombia, the USA to Romania, Iceland to China. Conversation around great work and impressive results crosses geographies. It is truly a liquid world we live in.

Other members of the panel include Karen H Ebben, General Motors' director, actionable consumer and brand intelligence, Beth Uyenco, senior vice president, international research, comScore, and Phillip Manzi, Nokia's director of global marketing operations.

"The Prize judging discussions have ... underlined how important it is for brands to have a clear purpose for innovation, and to incorporate this at every stage of their communications from initial insight to post campaign learnings. There is a worthy winner of the Warc Prize here, and I look forward to announcing it very soon," said Mildenhall.

Data sourced from Warc; additional content by Warc staff