Panasonic takes aim at grooming market, reaching a young, hairy audience with Chris Kamara

Electronics brand Panasonic is on the hunt for a young, fresh audience. To seek out this elusive consumer, it’s not pushing its historic success in big consumer electronics but is instead setting its sights on recapturing the grooming market with a little help of football pundit Chris “Kammy” Kamara.

Panasonic is not new to the world of grooming, but with its latest campaign – designed to promote the new i-Shaper product in particular – it hopes to position its Grooming range as a credible, standalone entity.

“We wanted to do something different for the brand to earn the right to talk about grooming to a new audience,” said Gaele Lalahy, head of brand communications at Panasonic. “We’ve been talking for many years about televisions and our audio categories but today we really earn the right to talk about styling and fashion.”

Panasonic Grooming’s target consumers are males aged 18-25 “who are style conscious and who want … to create new facial hair styles”. Buoyed by data that revealed two thirds of men restyle their stubble, beards and ‘taches on a monthly place, the brand developed two experiential activations designed to turn heads in the hairy hipster paradises of Camden, Brighton and Shoreditch.

Kamara fronted the ‘Hairy Tales’ campervan activation, which invited guys to have their facial hair styled and their photo taken for a special exhibition celebrating all things beard. The ‘Unbelievable Jeff!’ football icon was, according to Lalahy, chosen for his “legendary moustache” and his influence on Panasonic’s young, male target audience.

The photos taken on the road in the Hairy Tales van were displayed at the ‘Tash Modern’ in Shoreditch as part of a one-day static experience, dubbed the UK’s first ever live facial hair gallery. The live marketing plans were supported with PR, social and traditional media.

“We’ve been trying for many years now to put an emphasis on storytelling and growing closer to the customer, and not being so feature led,” said Lalahy. “We believe we really have the chance to change the brand perception by being more open to what the customer wants and form an understanding and partnership with that audience.”

Katie Deighton

Katie Deighton is The Drum’s senior reporter - creative and video based in London. She produces, films, presents and edits the title’s editorial video output, including series such as On The Scene, Ad Breakers and Why I Left Advertising, and manages its coverage of the creative sector. She also reports on the intersection between politics and marketing, as well as the third sector and fashion.

All by Katie