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The Klarna campaign that set the record straight with shoppers


By Awards Analyst, writer

June 15, 2022 | 4 min read

Klarna, Motel, Bountiful Cow and Kinetic won in the Advertising category at The Drum Awards for Marketing 2022 for their ’Discover the Truth’ work. Here, we find out more about what went into this successful campaign...

klarna set the record straight

Klarna's murals generated over 160,000 visits

Swedish fintech company Klarna’s ’buy now, pay later’ service is growing fast, but it has often suffered a bad reputation. It needed to set the record straight about its services and build trust with shoppers aged 25 to 44.

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The brief

Since landing in the UK in 2014, there have been misgivings and misconceptions about Klarna. After monitoring conversations about the business, both online and in the national papers, seven claims were identified that were gaining traction, from ’Klarna is a scam’ to ’Klarna is targeting innocent millennials’.

Motel, Bountiful Cow and Kinetic needed to generate trust in Klarna and bust myths about the brand and the services it offers.

The idea

Usually when a brand is faced with negative press, it either discretely apologizes, withdrawing marketing support, or goes on the PR defensive. Klarna decided to go against tradition in the most public, fame-building way possible.

To garner trust and change perceptions, it needed to show that it had nothing to hide and allow the public to ’Discover the Truth’. Klarna partnered with artist Ignasi Monreal to create a mythical world of Klarna that was brought to life through out-of-home (OOH) and mobile.

Seven of the UK’s biggest canvases were selected to create a visual display in high-footfall pedestrian areas to ensure a high reach of Klarna’s target audience.

Klarna marketing awards 2022

OOH, via a QR code, was used to transport people to an educative and immersive online gallery and game in Klarna’s mythical world to take part in a myth-busting challenge. Each location was individually designed to depict one of the seven Klarna myths, with facts about it hidden within each virtual painting that could lead to prizes when uncovered.

The results

Across four weeks in May, the murals generated over 160,000 visits to the immersive mobile experience and 45,000 people managed to dispel all seven myths across the campaign.

This saw trust in the brand increase from 58% to 67% and positive sentiment towards Klarna increased 52% during 2021. On top of that, it increased monthly active users of the Klarna app by 7.3% from May 2021 to July 2021, with no other media activity running.

This project was a winner at The Drum Awards for Marketing 2022. You can see all the winners here. And check out which of The Drum Awards are currently open for entry.

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