Anatomy of an Ad: How Driven helped 100 women 'Feel Good' in skinny dipping spot

At a time when the soft drinks market is crowded with health-conscious products, Feel Good aims to carve out its brand positioning by extending a message of positivity in its latest 'all natural' ad featuring 100 women jumping naked into a lake. The Drum went on set (and participated in the ad) to get a first-hand look at the campaign.

With the launch of a new 100% natural range of flavoured water drinks, Driven Agency was tasked with bringing the Vimto-owned Feel Good Drinks Company brand to life with an integrated campaign.

"Obviously the brand is called Feel Good, so the clue is in the name," said Graham Drury, partner at Driven, on the genesis of the idea. “We wanted to capture something that actually meant something. It’s all about this feeling of liberation and freedom.

"We had to find somewhere private and beautiful so when people arrived they felt comfortable. Finding this place was a a dead important part of the jigsaw."

The idea was to create a documentary-style film where client-side senior brand manager Becky Unwin rallies the 100 women to go skinny dipping with her in Spain, tracking the journey from start to finish and how the women feel during the experience. Amongst the women, aged between 20 and 63, were ten ‘Boobette’ ambassadors from cancer awareness charity CoppaFeel!.

The shoot took place in rural Andalucia with an all female crew and led by director Nicky Woodhouse from Maker Projects, who incorporated underwater cameras, drones and Go Pros into the production of the film in order to capture every moment.

“With an event like this we needed to capture it from all angles. It’s not something you can do loads of takes of; it’s pretty much a one take wonder,” said Jennie Ferrar, deputy creative director at Driven.

“We knew there was a window where we had the 100 women all together so the best way to capture it was an underwater a camera, Go Pros on people’s heads, a drone in the sky to see the location, and of course our director behind the camera. So it was really throwing everything at that moment – this had to be spontaneous,” Ferrar added.

To recruit the 100 women, Becky Unwin of Feel Good drinks took to social media, called acquaintances and even approached strangers in the street.

“If we’d have planned it down to a T it wouldn’t have had that seize the moment quality, though it did come with its downsides,” Unwin mused.

“We had some challenges, obviously. The week before we were due to shoot we didn’t have the full quota. There were people who were maybes, or waiting on flight details. It was very difficult to co-ordinate as people needed to organise shift swaps, child care, so there were a few hairy moments, but we got there in the end."

In addition to the documentary style film, Feel Good is executing an experiential campaign where people can hop into a 'Feel Good taxi', as well as a consumer PR campaign, radio and out of home plans in August. MEC is handling media buying while Social Chain is engaging in an influencer campaign with some of the skinny dipping participants.

"There’s only certain types of clients you’d lay this challenge out to. We proposed that we do this for real, live, where there’s nowhere to hide," Drury said.

"The client has taken a big leap of faith and we have managed to pull it off, I think. From an agency perspective, I've never seen staff moved to tears of relief during a campaign."

Read The Drum's first-hand account of participating in the ad here.

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