Kärcher Pressure Washers - Men just want to have fun: how getting to grips with the complex mind of man became the catalyst for growth for Kärcher Pressure Washers

Principal Author: Jamie Inman – HMDG

Contributing Author: Neil Dawson – HMDG


The judges really enjoyed this paper. A potentially dull and functional German product was advertised with real joie de vivre and the result was equally positive. Despite being available in the UK for many years, high pressure washers remained a relatively underdeveloped category. By assessing the male psyche, and employing brand advertising to a category with no history of it, Kärcher were able to deliver results. Carefully planned television slots were used to target the male audience, through exploring the playful satisfaction connected with power tools. Despite a small marketing budget, this campaign was a catalyst for strengthening Kärcher's relationship with consumers and retailers. The campaign delivered a short-term payback of between three to five times the total 2009 budget of £570,000. This advertising ran for just 15 days and the effects are clear. This paper should form the basis of a bigger conversation with finance directors at Kärcher to increase future investment and see even stronger returns, and maybe with finance directors at a great many other businesses looking for evidence that short, effective and creative thinking can really payback.