Comfort Fabric Conditioner – Comfort challenges the 'rules' and wins big in South-East Asia

Principal Authors: Benoit Wiesser and Anna Soliman – Ogilvy & Mather Asia Pacific, Daniel Brenikov – Ogilvy & Mather Hong Kong

Contributing Authors: Yan Yi Chee – Ogilvy & Mather Asia Pacific; Vikas Gupta, Kshitij Singh, Panipak Kovithvathanaphong, Fransisca Ho, Daren Chuan – Unilever Asia Private; Marc Gilmore – Mindshare


This paper provides a wonderful lesson in how to overcome a ‘not invented here’ attitude and instead find a ‘how can we reinvent it here’ solution. The Comfort team in Asia Pacific saw something wonderful in the UK market and spent time working on how they could adapt the campaign to work within their culture. Overall the judges regarded the Asia Pacific campaign to be even stronger than the UK campaign upon which it is based, and the results support that. In 2006, Unilever's top global fabric conditioner brand. Comfort, was stagnating in South-East Asia. Sales were declining and value growth was lacklustre. A new communications campaign, Andy and Lily in Clothworld, transformed the brand and its fortunes in the region. This paper proves how by driving brand differentiation and perceived value, Andy and Lily's Clothworld has become one of the most effective campaigns in the region – in just three years. Comfort's share of the category pushed from 58% to 67%, its annual sales growth increased to 40% in the first year, generating incremental sales of nearly €157m across the three-year campaign period. Additionally, the net profit more than doubled to €28.8m and the payback of brand communications substantially increased from 93% to 141%.