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By The Drum, Editorial

June 6, 2024 | 4 min read

Winning Advertising Creative Gold in The Drum Awards for Marketing Americas is Harvest Creative. Here is the award-winning case study.

Objective

Since the launch of the brand in 2015, STōK Cold Brew Coffee has grown rapidly but has a huge opportunity to drive brand awareness and share of voice. For STōK Cold Brew’s first-ever national campaign, the goal was simple: create a distinct and disruptive campaign that aligns with the brand’s personality to drive brand awareness and ultimately increase purchase intent.

Insight

To deliver a national campaign that punches above its weight and breaks through the noise, it had to be culturally relevant to the STōK consumer and couldn’t smell like advertising. Consumers want to be entertained, not talked at. STōK wanted to give them something to talk about.

Strategy

Harvest Creative, Danone's in-house agency, found cultural relevancy in Wrexham AFC—a team, a town, and a community that has captured media attention thanks to its celebrity chairmen. The Wrexham AFC Cinematic Universe became STōK's vehicle to introduce the brand in a real and meaningful way.

Execution

Next, it was time to announce this partnership. The team highlighted an entertaining cultural and consumer truth: STōK is sponsoring a football team in a country where cold brew is not culturally mainstream. The brand's hero asset, the :30 Secret Replacement video, brought this cultural tension to life by hijacking the Wrexham AFC team’s teatime with STōK Cold Brew Coffee. This swap was a catalyst for more big changes to come. Harvest Creative's partner, Maximum Effort, concepted, executed, and championed both this idea and all work within this campaign.

After the announcement, STōK fueled Wrexham AFC through three additional tentpole moments:

  • Wrexham U.S.A Invasion: The first time Wrexham AFC competed stateside against Premier League and MLS teams. To amplify the in-person activation experience, STōK partnered with Men in Blazers, a podcast dedicated to creating connection and inclusivity through positive storytelling.
  • New Football Season: STōK brought Wrexham and the STōK Cae Ras to a US audience through targeted media content alongside the "Welcome to Wrexham" documentary.
  • Super Bowl Spot: STōK debuted its first-ever Super Bowl spot featuring Sir Anthony Hopkins. This work, designed for consumer entertainment, showcased STōK as the fuel behind Sir Anthony’s performance as Wrex, the beloved Wrexham mascot. The ad made AdWeek’s 13 Best Super Bowl spots list, the only regional ad to be included.

Results

STōK's campaign and partnership with Wrexham AFC was a smashing success. The brand saw immediate results both in sales and household penetration within the first three months of launch. Key moments throughout the year yielded significant lift in consumer brand awareness and over 14 billion impressions across all digital, social, and earned channels. This partnership allowed STōK Cold Brew Coffee to gain market share and show increased sales even as the rest of the category declined.

Engagement & Recognition

Given the star power of Wrexham AFC and their chairmen, a robust earned strategy was vital to success. This approach proved to be a key awareness driver across the US, with earned media coverage spanning various verticals and achieving a 99% positive/neutral sentiment. The brand's Super Bowl commercial made AdWeek’s 13 Best Super Bowl spots list, solidifying its creative genius.

While media coverage was at its highest, STōK flooded consumers’ digital and social channels with integrated storytelling. The brand exceeded its Instagram reach rate benchmark and achieved 92% of its full-year Instagram growth goal in just one day. The campaign has surpassed their impressions benchmark by 826K, with more anticipated as future tentpole moments unfold.

The impact of these results extends beyond the grocery shelf, positioning STōK Cold Brew Coffee as a culturally relevant brand that takes bold, unconventional moves. The brand aims to emerge with a passionate fan base for both cold brew and Wrexham AFC.

Awards Case Studies The Drum Awards For Marketing Americas Marketing

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