Call me edgier than a Dalston-based dodecahedron, but I think Christmas in PR land is more fun than Christmas in ad-land.
In ad-land, everyone is out to get you. Every Tom, Dick and Harriet is ready to launch their claws into your multi-million-pound creative for a hot take takedown. But it’s not just your industry looking to score points; you are now under attack from an increasingly anti-advert public and the mainstream media that unironically bashes the industry that keeps it afloat.
John Lewis was accused of eradicating men, M&S were accused of eradicating Palestine and the National Lottery was accused of eradicating any common sense when she told him about the winning lottery ticket.
Perhaps it’s because everyone now knows how expensive Christmas adverts are? When you combine production values with channel strategy, you’re looking at a financial commitment that could have gone towards subsidising Christmas rather than publicising it…or perhaps it’s just because people are arseholes.
When everyone is taking your work so seriously, the best way to counter is with unbridled frivolity…and that’s why OREO’s Puffer Snacket cleaned up this week. Timed to coincide with the seasonal release of OREO’s snowflake biccies, the puffer snacket is world-class ridiculousness.
Stylistically influenced by OREO’s iconic colours, the design takes inspiration from a new trend the brand has coined as ‘Snack-core’ – where fashion incorporates utilitarian features to allow for snacking, the innovative design includes hidden features such as:
- Crush-proof technology preventing crumb calamities, ensuring cookies remain intact all day long
- Melt-proof insulation to preserve the white chocolate that encases OREO Snowy Enrobed cookies
- An integrated cookie dispenser so you can share your favourite snacks with your loved ones whilst out and about
- Shape-shifting technology, allowing you to turn the cosy puffer into a cape so you’re handsfree to tackle any task
Is it accompanied by some of the most pointless consumer research I’ve ever seen? Yes. Is it even available for sale? No. It’s a prototype created by the good people at Plunge Creations. Have I seen it everywhere and do I now know OREO has a festive range? Yes.
OREO has achieved reach with zero backlash because it isn’t pretending to be something it’s not. It’s unashamedly silly, just festive enough and it brings a smile. Like a well-executed round of charades on Christmas Day, you might not remember it forever – but in that particular moment, it’s what Christmas is all about.
Just Eat's Christmas Picky Bits
For the second stunt, I’m going to break an unwritten rule and include a Mischief one…but I feel comfortable doing so because it wasn’t my idea.
Sainsbury’s partners with Just Eat to trial the first-ever ‘Christmas Picky Bits’ delivery store in London, which allows customers to create a ‘picky bits’ meal across vegetarian, vegan and meat option. @sainsburys @JustEatUK pic.twitter.com/BmvyDcB2me— Grocery-retail.com (@groretail) December 7, 2023
When one of our senior account managers started talking about ‘girl dinner, but for Christmas’ I had to do the dreaded ‘nod-smile-secretly-google-what-on earth-she-was-talking-about’ manoeuvre. As I soon found out, it’s not just a thing – but a very big thing. Nigella calls it Picky Bits, some call it British Tapas, some think it is cold food only, some think it is a national treasure, others a national disgrace.
When there’s this much plate-related debate, you should feed it – so we opened the first ever ‘Picky Bits’ restaurant on Just Eat, just in time for Christmas. Launched by Specs Gonzalez and Chloe Burrows and in conjunction with Sainsbury’s, it gave the people what they wanted – a Christmas Dinner made entirely from Picky Bits.
Was it only available near the dark kitchens that made it? Yes. Will it stay open all Christmas? Of course not. But did it get a load of coverage, bang on socials and generally align Just Eat with culture and passions? Yes, it ruddy did.
So there’s the lesson for this, the last Stuntwatch of 2023. When it comes to Christmas, just do Christmas. Yes, it’s a time for giving and charity, but it’s all the season to be jolly…and stunts are jolly!
This week's PR Stunt Watch was written by Greg Double, Creative Director at Mischief PR.
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