Black Friday, a day of commerce mayhem, was slightly stranger than usual with the launch of a Brexit pop-up store in London stocked with parody products forewarning of inflated pricing, inferior produce, pharmaceutical shortages and "adequate food".
The People’s Vote campaign on Friday 23 November stocked “the worst deals ever” in a minimart called Costupper in Peckham high street in London. The group wanted to highlight the inflation of prices caused by the economic uncertainty around the UK public's slim decision to leave the European Union in 2016.
Senior marketing figures orchestrated the bold PR stunt.
The People’s Vote marketing director Sarah Baumann (formerly deputy chief executive of Leo Burnett) and creative advisor Daniel Fisher, known for delivering the 'Sorry I Spent It Myself' campaign for Harvey Nichols while at Adam&EveDDB, leveraged their experience to help production designer Olly Williams execute his idea.
Brexit-themed items stocked in the store include Price-Up Krispies, Tomato Botchup, Conman's Mustard, Brexit Porky Pies, Chlorinated Chicken and Beefed Up Beef. An in-store cash machine informs visitors how quickly their balance is diminishing and the store also stocks magazine titles like The Hard Times and Feel the Heat.
Baumann said "In recent years, Black Friday has become part of the country's run up to Christmas ritual, so it seemed ripe for disruption. The timing of the Deal announcement was a gift we couldn't ignore."
Fisher added "There's a lot of noise about Brexit at the moment and we wanted to find a way to cut through it all. The shop goes against the grain of what the rest of the world is saying, so hopefully it will do that in spades. It will make people smile but behind it all is a serious message."
Research from the Office for National Statistics found that costs for the average household were up by £546 per year or 6% since the referendum. It also outlined that 250g of butter has seen an average increase of 43p, coffee is up 26p increase for a 227g bag and bread has seen a 4.5% price increase.
The campaign urges visitors to protest Brexit by writing to their local MP through a specially created microsite.