A campaign from IKEA, the Swedish retailer, was the most popular case study with Warc's European users in 2011, ahead of efforts from Heineken beer and Walkers crisps.

Seeking to improve perceptions and increase sales, How IKEA got over itself and became happy inside showed how the firm used consumer and cultural research to align the brand with the importance that UK shoppers put on their homes.

The campaign delivered strongly on all fronts, reviving the brand's scores for awareness and emotional proximity, as well as growing sales of the retailer's kitchens and storage products.

Heineken Italia, meanwhile, asked 25 to 34 year old Italian men "Are you still with us?" in a bid to maintain its premium positioning and arrest a decrease in sales.

The campaign appealed to men's desire to remain young and carefree, and helped increase sales in a category facing an overall decline.

Walkers Sandwich, the Grand Prix winner of the Cannes Creative Effectiveness Awards, used a celebrity-led agenda to boost sales of Walkers crisps (potato chips) among sandwich-buying UK office workers.

The campaign resonated with British consumers, journalists, the brand's own sales force and retailers, thus growing revenues by 26%.

Another Grand Prix-winner also made the list: Hellmann's Real Food Movement, which won the top award at the Canadian Cassies for countering perceptions that it was unhealthy.

The brand's strategic partnerships with local food and green initiatives spearheaded an "Eat Real. Eat Local" positioning, which delivered successive year-on-year market share increases topping 25%.

Finally, the planning-driven idea of Nike GRID, designed to create a passion for running amongst young Londoners, joined the list of most-read cases.

This game-led strategy saw young people running a total of 12,500 miles around the streets of London, renewing Nike's relevance with the next generation of runners in the process.

For more details about the most popular material featured on Warc in 2011, click here.

Data sourced from Warc