UG Awards 19

Best Marketing Campaign leads shortlisting entries in the 31st Annual Awards

An impresive 11 entries were deemed worthy of shortlisting in the Best Marketing Campaign category of the Ulster Grocer Marketing Awards 2019, to be unveiled at the GroceryAid Ulster Grocers’ ball in the Culloden Hotel on May 10.

Entries were also strong across the nine other categories of the awards, particularly Best Brand , Best New Product Launch/Relaunch , Best CSR Initiative/Charity Partnership and Best Digital Marketing Campaign. Best Digital , a new award this year, has welcomed MXB on board as sponsor.

MXB joins other award sponsors Aqua Twist , Derry Refrigerated Transport , Food NI, Henderson Food Machinery , Invest NI , Kestrel Foods , NI Trucks ,Hunky Dorys and PRL In-Market Solutions.

Tickets are still available from GroceryAid for the Ulster Grocers’ Ball from Jim McAlea at [email protected]

The Ball is a fundraiser for industry charity GroceryAid , and each couple attending receives the famous Grocers’ Ball hamper , while enjoying a drinks reception, multi-course meal showcasing local produce , entertainment throughout the evening and of course the Ulster Grocer Marketing Awards.

 

BEST MARKETING CAMPAIGN 2018 – SPONSORED BY PRL IN-MARKET SOLUTIONS

 

BOOST DRINKS – 15 YEARS A GIANT

 

Boost’s mission for 2018 (its 15th year in NI) was to protect its number one position* and to increase sales by delivering a year-long programme of consumer and trade activity, designed to keep the brand at the forefront of customers’ minds. This was developed through strategic PR and promotional marketing methods. The Design a Can campaign engaged with consumers and created excitement. Organised in association with creative community YCN (You Can Now), it saw students from Northern Ireland redesign Boost’s Sugar-Free Energy 250ml can with the winning design manufactured and launched into the market as a limited-edition product featured on more than one million cans across the province. The winning student developed the campaign 15 Years a Giant, which was a nod towards the Giant’s Causeway. The We Love Local Road Trip, meanwhile, saw Boost travel 200 miles across NI to thank retailers for their support over the last 15 years. 2018 saw Boost taking the top three selling soft drink spots in NI convenience**, with sales of 32.9 million, up almost 2,000,000 units y-o-y. A carefully crafted PR, media and social media plan underpinned the campaign.

*IRI Marketplace Data Symbols and Independents 52 weeks unit and value sales to 10.09.17

**Data NI Convenience unit sales 52 weeks unit and value sales to 30.12.18

DALE FARM ICE CREAM – TAKE YOUR TASTEBUDS BACK

 

In 2018, Dale Farm Ice Cream invested a significant proportion of its total marketing budget in its marketing strategy to further consolidate its excellent credentials in NI and raise awareness in RoI. With a more varied and vibrant product portfolio than ever, a 360 campaign was developed, Take Your Tastebuds Back, using outdoor, POS, digital, social media and PR. The OOH campaign was a colourful expression of the brand, utilising 10 different formats, two of which were first-to-market channels, supported by a suite of PoS material, maximising standout at store level and building a path to purchase for the consumer to the freezer. Dale Farm Ice Cream embarked on an experiential consumer engagement campaign, hitting the road in a bespoke ice cream van on a Big Summer Road Trip. A detachable social media wall provided rich content. Facebook following increased by +7% and Instagram +9% across the two months; the campaign reached over 515,000 people. Widespread listings were secured in forecourt and convenience stores throughout Ireland, and expanded listings with multiples. DFIC was the fastest growing ice cream brand in both Northern Ireland and Republic of Ireland. Having grown its market share +7.5%, it is Northern Ireland’s number one ice cream brand.

HENDERSON WHOLESALE – FIND YOUR INSPARATION

 

With consumers living increasingly busy lives, convenient meal solutions are growing in popularity. Shoppers increasingly shop in missions and the ‘tonight’s tea’ mission is an important one to get right. Insight revealed a decline in eating out and an increase in meals being prepared and eaten at home. This presented significant opportunities for SPAR. Confident about its range of products in meeting the needs of the tonight’s tea shopper (particularly from its own-label enjoy local range) – SPAR simply needed shoppers to see, taste, and tell everyone about their products. It developed a 360-degree marketing campaign, Find Your lnSPARation, aimed at showcasing the best of SPAR’s tonight’s tea range. The campaign centred around experiential marketing tactics, bringing food to life through taste and tell sampling and cookery events and brand building messaging across multiple media platforms. SPAR’s Find your lnSPARation campaign performed beyond all expectations, really propelling the brand into a tonight’s tea destination, with 87% of shoppers agreeing it ‘was the number one convenience brand place to go for evening meal solutions’. Commercially, the campaign delivered market-leading results of up to 10% increases in retail sales, footfall and basket spend. In a competitive and economically uncertain FMCG market, that’s an exceptional performance.

HENRY DENNY & SONS – DENNY NORTHERN IRELAND BACK TO SCHOOL CAMPAIGN

 

Following several years of declining relevance, 2018 was a pivotal year to change the Denny brand’s trajectory. In an increasingly volatile marketplace, the focus was on reconnecting emotionally with consumers to drive brand meaning, relevance and ultimately reappraisal. The team set about crystallising the brand’s essence, purpose and personality, ensuring all were grounded in unique and ownable brand truths. Combining this with rich consumer insight around personal leaps of faith, the next step was to create fresh, relevant comms assets to bring to life the new brand campaign asking people to take inspiration from the compelling Denny story and Seize the Denny. In five months, the brand recreated its beacon, moved to a strategic new master brand architecture and created assets across TV, radio, digital and shopper, deploying a heavyweight media campaign. For Denny, Back to School time has always been a key trading period, particularly sliced cooked meats for children’s lunchboxes. The Back to School campaign, the first under the new Denny positioning, was an enormous success in terms of landing the new brand positioning in a meaningful way during a key trading period. Results far exceeded expectations with growth across financial and market metrics and a complete reversal of the overall brand’s performance trajectory.

HOVIS BAKERIES IRELAND – ORMO

 

At the start of 2017, ORMO was the fifth bestselling brand in the Northern Ireland Traditional Other Bakery category, and immediate action was required to re-build the brand and re-engage with new and existing consumers. A Product Improvement programme was introduced to benchmark ORMO against its competitive set on core product characteristics, conducted independently at Loughry College, with improvement areas identified for Soda Farls, Fruit Loaf and Rolls.The key ORMO campaign in 2018 was to support the launch of a new premium range in September 2018. The NPD strategy was very explicit, ORMO an iconic Northern Ireland brand collaborating with two other successful NI agri-food brands in the form of Mash Direct and Ballyrashane Creameries. The campaign was fully integrated including a province-wide outdoor and PR programme to drive consumer awareness and engagement of the new ORMO range, with coverage achieved in all national papers. An extensive in-store campaign ensured strong stand out in the bakery aisle with display units and shelf branding.Sales exceeded all internal forecasts, and ORMO increased its share in both the Potato Farl and Wheaten Bread categories while, by the end of December, ORMO was the number two brand and the fastest growing (Source : Nielsen MAT 2018 Value).

MACKLE PETFOODS – THIS IS NATURAL BEAUTY

 

Mackle Petfoods creates healthy, affordable meals for dogs and cats of all shapes and sizes with its brands Naturo, Brandy and Cat Club. The business invested over £3m into its Naturo manufacturing facility in Moy in 2017, and a further £2m into a state-of-the-art CAMA Packing line in 2018. The attraction of Naturo as a competitively-priced, premium product along with offering retailers incremental sales has helped the brand achieve impressive growth this year. The beginning of 2018 kickstarted Mackle Petfoods’ delivery of a very ambitious marketing plan, with a budget of £500,000, across UK and Ireland. Its objectives were to raise brand awareness across the UK and Ireland; to convey Naturo brand values; to educate pet owners about the quality and health benefits of Naturo; and to increase sales across UK and Ireland by 30% in 2018 (a 5% increased objective on 2017).The marketing strategy would be a combination of above and below the line covering TV, digital media, events, PR and social activity. The campaign, This is Natural Beauty, would feature cats and dogs in their ‘natural’ settings, embodying natural pet behaviour.

MASH DIRECT – PETER RABBIT CAMPAIGN

 

Mash Direct was grown around family values. It was founded on a sixth-generation, family-run farm to make meal times easier for their customers; creating healthy and convenient vegetable side dishes, free from artificial nasties and with homemade taste and texture. In 2018, the Hamilton family (Martin, Tracy, Lance and Jack) decided to team up with Peter Rabbit for the launch of his new movie and to spread the word about Mash Direct’s award-winning vegetables. They seamlessly integrated the brand with Peter Rabbit over a range of platforms to gain maximum exposure for the movie launch, utilising followers on social media as well as pursuing traditional means of advertising such as PR, out of home, radio and email marketing. The marketing campaign reached 17,336,179 people. An on-pack promotion allowed customers to enter a prize draw to win a ‘Family holiday to Peter Rabbit’s Farmhouse in France’, with strong visibility on supermarket shelves. To close the campaign, Mash Direct hosted an exclusive screening of the Peter Rabbit Movie for media and influencers. Sales across the Peter Rabbit-branded Mash Direct lines increased by 11% during the campaign which has contributed to a record-breaking financial year with 35 Mash Direct packs sold every minute across the UK and Ireland.

MOY PARK – MASTERFULLY CRAFTED

MARVELLOUSLY TASTY

 

In 2018 Moy Park wanted to shake up the fresh breaded chicken category with its Masterfully Crafted Marvellously Tasty campaign. Year on year, brand value has grown by +3%. In its 75th anniversary year, Moy Park brand retains its position as the top-performing brand in Ireland. In driving purchase intent, Masterfully Crafted Marvellously Tasty over achieved, with 6 in 10 stating that they would be very likely to purchase a Moy Park coated product as a result of the activity.

Masterfully Crafted Marvellously Tasty was a product led marketing campaign (Apr – Dec 2018), which focused on the brand’s key differentiator versus competitors– taste. Rich, colourful language and hunger inducing imagery took centre stage, showcasing Moy Park’s golden-crumbed, crispy-coated creations. Mums of Ireland, seeking quick, easy, tasty and quality meal time solutions were targeted all along the path to purchase – creating awareness, driving consideration, intent and ultimately conversion in store.

From high impact OOH showcasing sizzling new packs, inspirational recipe video content for social media, a panel of taste experts, a radio partnership with Dublin’s 98FM, to a Marvellous Chicken Road Trip and crowd-pleasing Marvellous Chicken Market – Moy Park pulled out all the stops to communicate taste, ultimately getting their crispy coated creations in to the hands and mouths of as many shoppers as possible.

Moy Park brought taste to the people and let them be the judge of their products and they agreed – Moy Park. Masterfully Crafted. Marvellously Tasty.

MUSGRAVE – SUPERVALU FOR THE SUPER & THE VALU

 

SuperValu has a clear vision around Real Food, Real People; making food inspiring for customers, highlighting quality and ensuring the offering is underpinned by value. In Q4 2017, SuperValu sought to create a strategy that would help reaffirm customers’ perceptions around quality and value of range. The strategy had three core pillars: price, promotion and own brand. With the new proposition in place, the next stage was to create a campaign that would reposition SuperValu in the market and showcase the value on offer across the store. To support this, the new umbrella campaign for 2018, The Super & The Valu was launched. Throughout 2018, the campaign was supported consistently across direct mail and in-store leaflets, alongside an extensive outdoor campaign, radio campaign, in-store radio, and upweighted digital campaigns across social, display and email. Results were strong, with a notable rise in customer value perception and sales throughout the year. The introduction of the new PoS kits in-store helped to highlight the offering and the campaign also drove significant engagement on social media. Based on the strong results delivered, it is safe to say that The Super & The Valu struck a chord with both consumers and retailers alike, breathing new life into the brand.

MUSGRAVE – LOVING EVERYTHING LOCAL FOR 35 YEARS

 

Musgrave operates a network of family-owned independent retailers across the island, which collectively help to feed one-in-three people in Ireland and should be in prime position when it comes to Northern Ireland consumers’ perceptions of local retailers. This campaign told the Musgrave Northern Ireland story in an emotive and meaningful way, celebrating the company’s 35-year anniversary in Northern Ireland, and the work of the many people within the business that have contributed to its success. The strategy weaved the SuperValu, Centra and Mace brands into one, with the unified message of loving everything local for 35 years, putting people at the heart of the story. The campaign included the development of an eye-catching TV advert showcasing the brand’s commitment to all things local, putting the focus on people by giving the public the chance to star in the TV advert; creating teaser posts for social media; developing a full outdoor campaign; and driving home the local message through PoS in all stores. The campaign generated considerable success over a short period of time, helping to inspire the workforce; giving the business and independent retailers confidence in the brands, celebrating the impact of charity partnerships and the community impact of the brands, and communicating the company’s business values.

WHITE’S OATS – TASTE THE JOURNEY WITH WHITE’S OATS

Pioneering oats brand White’s Oats looked to support its existing market leadership position in Northern Ireland, as well as UK listings, with a new creative marketing campaign to communicate the unique taste and provenance of White’s Oats in a highly distinctive way, challenging perceptions that all oats are created equal.Taste the Journey was a brand activation campaign centred around a core message aligning its taste proposition alongside provenance. It creatively communicates the time it takes to bring its process and provenance to life, cleverly using illustration and typography that dials up cues of quality and heritage and ultimately providing the motivating reason to buy – taste. An illustrated oat kernel is brought to life through animation and acts as a common thread throughout the campaign, which consisted of a media mix of online and social, press advertising, PR and influencer marketing. It engaged with over three million consumers, activated over a six month period during 2018. Not only has the campaign to date delivered on ROI, recording year-on-year growth of 10% in NI and a 50% uplift in branded sales in specific GB accounts, but it has also secured new listings and new retail opportunities, which now accounts for 45% of total company turnover

LORRAINE HALL YOUNG MARKETEER AWARD  SPONSORED BY KESTREL FOODS

 

DALE FARM – CLAIRE HALE, MARKETING EXECUTIVE

 

Since commencing her career at Dale Farm in 2013, Claire has progressed successfully in Dale Farm. Claire graduated with Bsc Marketing honours from Ulster University, following this up with a Level 6 Digital Diploma in Professional Marketing, which she is in the process of completing at the Belfast Academy of Marketing. In 2017, she assumed brand responsibility for Dale Farm Ice Cream and Mullins Ice Cream brands. Operating at both strategic and tactical levels, Claire is responsible for driving several key brand metrics such as increasing brand visibility, building consumer engagement and growing market share. Within one year, Claire has successfully developed and delivered a comprehensive, all-Ireland campaign for Dale Farm Ice Cream that integrated communications across a range of consumer touchpoints with a focus on OOH. Her enthusiasm for innovation was demonstrated through two innovative, first-to-market channels; T-Side Lenticulars and temperature activated Dynamic Digital. Claire has also driven digital and social content marketing along with on-the-ground sampling. As a direct result of the all-Ireland campaign, Claire drove a +7.5% market share increase in NI impulse ice cream, with the brand securing number one market position in the Total NI Ice Cream market and delivered +77.5% value growth in Total ROI impulse ice cream.

HENDERSON GROUP – JADE MANNING,

ASSISTANT BRAND MANAGER

 

Since becoming a member of the marketing team within the Henderson group, Jade has proved herself to be dedicated, dynamic, enthusiastic and passionate in her work which has seen her progress from marketing assistant to brand manager. Her personality shines through in all she does. Jade has been part of a range of initiatives within internal and external teams and has project managed over 14 new EUROSPAR openings. She focuses on projects that bring real results to retailers and shoppers and are proven through post campaign sales figures. She has established excellent working relationships within the wider business due to her involvement in tactical campaigns, coffee mornings, festive events and store level marketing for EUROSPAR Wallace Village, Skeoge and many more. Jade continues to grow her skill set through CIM certificates and enrolling herself into Microsoft workshops that will upskill her everyday responsibilities, as well as challenging herself by Trekking Grand Canyon for Cancer Fund for Children. Jade has played an important role in growing the EUROSPAR Community Supermarket campaign from concept development of a £50,000 TV advert to connecting with community groups and raising over £100,000 through in-store events that have resulted in increased sales and footfall.

HENDERSON WHOLESALE – STEPHANIE TARES, ASSISTANT BRAND MANAGER

 

Stephanie has been working at the Henderson Group since 2017, moving through the ranks from marketing assistant to assistant brand manager. Her current role involves looking after the entire convenience channel made up of over 300 stores across NI. Her position is mainly concerned with brand marketing communications and plans, through a number of challenging objectives: increasing like-for-like wholesale and retail sales, driving footfall, and increasing brand awareness and favourability with customers. Stephanie is also responsible for delivering tailored marketing campaigns for independent retailers within the convenience channel, including bespoke individual campaigns to cluster marketing tactics for groups of stores, all to increase basket spend, footfall and favourability against competitors. She has perused driving sales in the tonight’s tea category, with customers living increasingly busy lives and convenient meal solutions growing in popularity. Stephanie has been working to change shopper perceptions and encourage the public that SPAR stores are a destination to buy everything they need for their evening meal and have a large offering of quality fresh meat and produce, contributing towards a 51% increase in customers’ awareness of offerings, 9% growth in sales across the estate and a 10% increase in market share.

 

BEST EXPORT MARKETING SPONSORED BY INVEST NI

 

IRWIN’S BAKERY – HOWELL’S SUCCESSFULLY SUPPLIES OWN-LABEL CAKE TO SPAR GB

 

Bought by the Irwin family in 2006 in order to introduce a specialist ‘handmade’ cakes and biscuits division to the overall business, Howell’s supplies NI and GB retailers with a range of cakes including the famous Jammy Joey. Lisburn-based Howell House has a reason to celebrate, following wins at three national industry awards for product quality and customer service delivery after successfully launching three new cakes to SPARs across England, Scotland and Wales. Irwin’s Bakery has worked closely alongside A.F. Blakemore to develop a range of SPAR own-label round cakes, and supported this strong launch across the estate. Irwin’s is a family business with a transparent business plan, and a focus on being competitive in the market and ensuring retailers generate excellent profits.

MACKLE PETFOODS – NATURO: BUILDING ON SUCCESS

 

In 2018, Naturo Petfoods invested €100,000 into marketing their products into the Dutch market. Having previously achieved impressive sales and growth in this market, the company decision to invest more money would not only help raise brand awareness but also help increase export levels.The campaign focused on three main channels to market the 2018 campaign, This is Natural Beauty. On social media, a mix of images, videos and gifs with the same consistent campaign messages and branding was shared throughout the Naturo NL Facebook and Instagram profiles. The assets shared were continually on brand, conveying brand messages and effective in engaging users. TV advertising featured three adverts portraying animals acting in their natural way conveying humour and key brand messages. Thirdly, a partnership with Tourism Ireland allowed the Naturo brand to be seen by a different type of audience, giving it a trustworthy position while gaining substantial awareness through Tourism Ireland NL’s newsletters and social media. Social media generated 1.5million impressions, 566,174 completed views and 1,306 clicks to website; TV activity reached 1.7 million; and the Tourism Ireland newsletter boasts a readership of 67,000. A completed £2m investment in its packing line, and further planned spend of £5m are the result of increased demand for Naturo pet food products.

THOMPSON’S TEA

 

The story of Thompson’s Tea began in Belfast, in 1896, but it wasn’t until the 1950s that Punjana was introduced to the Northern Irish tea drinking public, with the Pick Punjana Tea TV campaign.With an uncompromising devotion to quality for over a century, the brand has gone from strength to strength to become NI’s best-selling tea. It was now time to launch the award-winning Punjana brand in GB.After successfully securing listings in Tesco and Morrisons, Punjana enjoyed modest growth in what was a static mainstream black tea category. Comprehensive research was undertaken and while current Punjana drinkers in GB were very positively disposed towards the brand and its name, it had become clear that there was also a significant proportion of the English tea-drinking population that, without the benefit of a catchy jingle, had found the name confusing. After

researching many scenarios, it became clear that Thompson’s Tea, Four Generations of Passionate Tea Makers was a strong and compelling message.Despite the major decision to remove their hero brand from GB shelves and replace it with something entirely new, this gamble has been justified as sales of Thompson’s Special Everyday, after only six months, are already running at record levels in all of the GB supermarkets.

BEST GREEN MARKETING I SPONSORED BY NI TRUCKS

 

COCA-COLA HBC IRELAND & NORTHERN IRELAND – COMMITMENT TO CREATING A WORLD WITHOUT WASTE

 

At Coca-Cola HBC Ireland and Northern Ireland, sustainability is at the core of the company’s values and a key part of its business strategy.Since opening its plant in Knockmore Hill, Lisburn in 2010, Coca-Cola HBC has tangibly reduced its impact on the environment. 2020 targets were set against recycling and waste, energy usage and water conservation, with some targets ahead of schedule. In 2018, Coca-Cola HBC, in partnership with The Coca-Cola Company, also launched its World Without Waste strategy, with localised commitments to make its packaging more sustainable. This global strategy sets out an ambition to design more sustainable packaging; to collect and recycle the equivalent of every bottle or can sold by 2030; and to partner with NGOs, customers and stakeholders to help clean up the planet.With all of its bottles and cans already 100% recyclable, the company has focused on integrating more recycled plastic into its portfolio to create a true circular economy, and has light-weighted its packs, removing plastic from the supply chain completely. Messaging has been integrated to both Coca-Cola and Deep RiverRock TVs and on-pack to inspire and motivate people to recycle, while its partnership with Clean Coasts saw over 4,000 people collect 23 tonnes of litter from the Irish coastline in 2018.

MUSGRAVE – FRANK AND HONEST COMPOSTABLE

 

In 2018, Musgrave launched an ambitious three-year sustainability strategy, bringing the company to national attention for its efforts to reduce its carbon footprint and securing the coveted title of Green Retailer of the Year at the Ulster Grocer Marketing Awards 2018. Building on this success, the company made a significant commitment to boosting its green credentials through an innovative, Ireland-first campaign for its artisan coffee brand, Frank and Honest – to become the first national coffee brand to introduce compostable cups. The impressive initiative was much more than a marketing campaign. A partnership-focused approach brought retailers, consumers and wider stakeholders on the journey. Creative photography brought the story to life, while valuable third-party endorsements added credibility and weight to the initiative and creative PoS brought the campaign to life in-store. A digital-first marketing strategy delivered impressive results across owned social media channels. An image-led content strategy and a tongue-in-cheek tone that communicated with the brand’s core values spoke to a Millennial audience drove significant amounts of user-generated content. Locally, this was supported by regular Frank and Honest content on the SuperValu NI and Centra NI social platforms. Alongside this, an impactful PR campaign far exceeded expectations and objectives set.

 

BEST IN-STORE CONSUMER SALES PROMOTION I SPONSORED BY AQUA TWIST

 

HENDERSON WHOLESALE – ELF ON THE ‘SHOP’ SHELF

 

During late 2018, EUROSPAR stores across Northern Ireland played host to dozens of Christmas elves, encouraging shoppers to take part in their Elf on the shelf treasure hunt style competition in stores.From November 26–December 24, shoppers were challenged to visit their local store each day, find the elf, and post their entries into the official entry form box or take a picture and post it on the EUROSPAR NI Facebook page. Entrants had the chance to win a holiday worth £2,000 and two runners up would each receive a bike – with no limit on the number of entries, shoppers could boost their chances of winning by returning to a participating

EUROSPAR store every day. Each day during the campaign, the designated Elf Champion in store would come up with different locations and situations the elf would get into – maximising the engagement and positive experience of elf-hunting shoppers.The campaign was arranged in partnership with Golden Cow – which helped to ensure fantastic commercial success for two of Northern Ireland’s most recognisable grocery brands.Shoppers were keen to enter as frequently as possible – contributing to a footfall increase in EUROSPAR stores of 6.57%; while Golden Cow recorded a like-for-like retail sales increase of 21.7%.

MUSGRAVE – SUPERVALU & CENTRA IN-STORE LAPLAND COMPETITION WITH KELLOGG’S AND TERRA TRAVEL

 

In the run up to Christmas 2018, the SuperValu and Centra teams were tasked with ‘Winning Christmas’ and creating a fun in-store promotion that aligned with their central brand campaigns Helping you make Christmas Super for SuperValu and Live the Magic for Centra. A cross-divisional team was set up with representatives from Trading, Sales and Marketing. The team set out to develop a promotion that would not only create cut through in the market but would ultimately help increase footfall into stores. Launching in November 2018, custom Christmas post boxes were placed in every SuperValu and Centra store across Northern Ireland to post their letters to Santa. The ultimate aim of this creative in-store promotion was to send two families from Northern Ireland on a magical trip of a lifetime to Lapland. With Kellogg’s and Terra Travel on-board as partners, the campaign was communicated to local press and consumers via press releases, in-store PoS and social media. The creation of the in-store competition helped to drive customers into stores and gave independent retailers and company-owned managers something to shout about in their local communities. The campaign also generated considerable online and press awareness and saw like-for-like sales increase for both brands. In total, 1.5k entries were received.

 

BEST CSR INITIATIVE/CHARITY PARTNERSHIP SPONSORED BY HUNKY DORYS

HENDERSON WHOLESALE (SPAR NI) –

BLOOMING GREAT TEA PARTY IN AID OF MARIE CURIE

 

Marie Curie provides nursing services for around 4,000 people living with a terminal illness and their families at home in Northern Ireland each year, and cares for 500 people in the Belfast Hospice helping families make the most of the time they have together. It needs to raise over £3.5m per annum to fund its hospices and nursing care in Northern Ireland. As a charity partner of Marie Curie, SPAR NI wanted to get behind an initiative, The Blooming Great Tea Party, to encourage as many SPAR stores as possible across Northern Ireland to host a tea party on the same day for four hours to fundraise. A cost effective through-the-line marketing campaign including outdoor, radio, digital, direct mail and PR was developed to communicate the SPAR Marie Curie Blooming Great Tea Party Campaign. This resulted in 240 stores participating, raising £74, 876 in just four hours, whilst driving footfall to SPAR NI stores and positioning SPAR at the heart of local communities across Northern Ireland. The impact of the funds raised enables Marie Curie nurses to provide 3,750 hours of specialist nursing care in people’s homes throughout Northern Ireland.

THE IRISH NEWS – YOUNG NEWS READERS PROJECT

 

Northern Ireland has some of the most disadvantaged communities in the UK; one in five adults lack basic literacy skills. Through its Young News Readers (YNR) initiative, The Irish News underlined its commitment to the community and to delivering its Corporate Social Responsibility agenda.The initiative addressed the important social issue of low literacy rates impacting very negatively on people’s lives. YNR involves the weekly distribution of a New School Edition of The Irish News to schools throughout Northern Ireland via the existing wholesale and retail network. It is supported by a teacher resource pack and the initiative was developed in partnership with St Mary’s University College and CBI NI. YNR builds readership, grows literacy and builds partnerships with schools and is a central strand of the paper’s CSR.YNR is fully resourced by the paper in providing editorial and journalistic input; dedicated design and print capacity with associated overhead costs are absorbed by the paper as part of its CSR commitment.Over 6,500 pupils and 100 plus schools across NI were reached, with primary, post-primary, grammar and secondary schools, Catholic, integrated and state schools all signed up to YNR to receive the school edition. Increased circulation via YNR and the Schools Edition enabled The Irish News to outperform the market.

 

MUSGRAVE – SUPERVALU SUPERSTARS

 

With 35 stores in rural towns across Northern Ireland, SuperValu is literally positioned at the heart of the local community. SuperValu wanted to reflect that position, not only through the services on offer and food and drink that they sell, but also through the work that they do within the local community. While the SuperValu stores are committed to supporting the central partnership with Action Cancer, SuperValu also set itself an ambition to grow its already proven formula for SuperMums into an initiative that celebrates everyone in our community, and SuperValu SuperStars was born. At SuperValu, the brand stands for Real Food, Real People, and SuperValu SuperStars would help recognise and celebrate real people in local communities who go above and beyond the call of duty to help and support those in need. Categories include Young SuperStar, Fundraising SuperStar, Unsung Hero, Community Group SuperStar, Social Enterprise SuperStar and a sixth award for a SuperValu colleague raising vital funds for Action Cancer. The awards were promoted through media partners, promotional leaflets, in-store promotions and social media. Now entering into its third year as SuperValu SuperStars, the initiative has gone from strength to strength, with finalists from every county, age group, gender and religious background recognised.

mxb & DEEP RIVER ROCK – THIRST FOR BETTER

 

In July 2018, Deep RiverRock launched Thirst for Better, a five-year CSR initiative designed to celebrate and support community groups across the island of Ireland. The campaign enables consumers to donate 10p from every bottle of Deep RiverRock to a registered community group of their choice, including community groups engaged in activity spanning education, fitness and well-being through to creative art, family and kids’ activity. In 2018, Deep RiverRock held the number two market position for bottled water brands in the RoI market, behind Ballygowan. Sourced in the Antrim Hills and bottled locally, the brand holds the number one position in the NI market. In 2018, it was determined that one of the key elements necessary to help the brand reach the number one position in the RoI market was for the brand to assert its Irish roots and become more embedded in the local psyche. Thirst for Better as a CSR initiative was created to positively make a difference to communities across Ireland, at a grass-roots level, delivering positive social impact with every bottle sold. Six months into the campaign, over 7,500,000 people have been reached through media activity across the island of Ireland. There have been over 160,000 donations made to date.

 

 

BEST NEW PRODUCT LAUNCH/RELAUNCH SPONSORED BY DERRY REFRIGERATED TRANSPORT

 

BOOST DRINKS – SUGAR FREE CAN

 

Boost’s mission for 2018 (its 15th year in NI) was to protect its number one position* and to increase sales by delivering a year-long programme of consumer and trade activity, designed to keep the brand at the forefront of customers’ minds. This was developed through strategic PR and promotional marketing methods. The Design a Can campaign engaged with consumers and created excitement. Organised in association with creative community YCN (You Can Now), it saw students from Northern Ireland redesign Boost’s Sugar-Free Energy 250ml can with the winning design manufactured and launched into the market as a limited-edition product featured on more than one million cans across the province. The winning student developed the campaign 15 Years a Giant, which was a nod towards the Giant’s Causeway. The We Love Local Road Trip, meanwhile, saw Boost travel 200 miles across NI to thank retailers for their support over the last 15 years. 2018 saw Boost taking the top three selling soft drink spots in NI convenience**, with sales of 32.9 million, up almost 2,000,000 units y-o-y. A carefully crafted PR, media and social media plan underpinned the campaign.

 

*IRI Marketplace Data Symbols and Independents 52 weeks unit and value sales to 10.09.17

**Data NI Convenience unit sales 52 weeks unit and value sales to 30.12.18

 

HENDERSON WHOLESALE – ENJOY LOCAL REBRAND

 

When it comes to wine, provenance and terroir are important. The same is true for food. Which is why Henderson Wholesale made the original decision in 2015 to create enjoy local, a range showcasing the quality of Northern Irish food. Sourcing its food locally enables SPAR to take care of the hard part, so consumers can focus on eating better food daily. It knows exactly where its food has come from, and deals directly with farmers and grocers, allowing it to support and improve both local suppliers and the economy. Key consumer insights in 2017 indicated that shoppers were confused by the range’s wide colour palette and didn’t feel the packaging effectively highlighted the products’ quality. Henderson Wholesale’s objective in 2018 was to build upon its initial success, re-branding and re-launching 16 categories and 123 SKUs within enjoy local that clearly confirmed the range’s locality and communicated the quality of the products within the range through packaging and messaging. Two areas of importance repeatedly arose from insights fundamental to a customer for authenticating a product’s locality and quality: product origin and place of production and packaging, which Henderson Wholesale then used to shape its core objectives and project direction.

 

HOVIS BAKERIES IRELAND – ORMO

 

At the start of 2017, ORMO was the fifth bestselling brand in the Northern Ireland Traditional Other Bakery category, and immediate action was required to re-build the brand and re-engage with new and existing consumers. A Product Improvement programme was introduced to benchmark ORMO against its competitive set on core product characteristics, conducted independently at Loughry College, with improvement areas identified for Soda Farls, Fruit Loaf and Rolls.The key ORMO campaign in 2018 was to support the launch of a new premium range in September 2018. The NPD strategy was very explicit, ORMO an iconic Northern Ireland brand collaborating with two other successful NI agri-food brands in the form of Mash Direct and Ballyrashane Creameries. The campaign was fully integrated including a province-wide outdoor and PR programme to drive consumer awareness and engagement of the new ORMO range, with coverage achieved in all national papers. An extensive in-store campaign ensured strong stand out in the bakery aisle with display units and shelf branding. Sales exceeded all internal forecasts, and ORMO increased its share in both the Potato Farl and Wheaten Bread categories while, by the end of December, ORMO was the number two brand and the fastest growing (Source : Nielsen MAT 2018 Value).

MACKLE PETFOODS – NATURO: CHEF’S SELECTION

 

Naturo is Mackle Petfoods’ super-premium wet dog food offering, made with 100% natural ingredients that are fresh and locally sourced.The development of Naturo: Chef’s Selection came from an innovation by founder John Mackle, teamed with identifying gaps in the market. This new, super premium range of Naturo gives customers an additional value, while also attracting new customers with an interest in a healthier diet for their pets. To make the new range a success, Mackle Petfoods came up with a strategy to communicate the key messages and ethos of Chef’s Selection, which included using the following channels:i n-house social media; PR; press/influencer drops; exhibition promotion; advertising (print, adwords, display, etc); and existing customer trials. Naturo: Chef’s Selection was only launched in the past six months, but the growth and demand for the product has been overwhelming. Since the range launched in September, Mackle Petfoods can tell from the analytics that existing customers of the Naturo range are trialling and switching to the new premium range. This new range of Naturo was a hit with online customers and was immediately launched into Tesco stores in the UK and Ireland, later followed by Morrison’s.

 

MUSGRAVE – SUPERVALU SIGNATURE TASTES

 

Through independent qualitative research, SuperValu found that during the week, consumers are looking for value and healthy time-saving meals. However, when it comes to the weekend or key seasonal events, they are willing to spend more on top-tier ingredients and premium meals. Inspired by this insight, SuperValu saw an opportunity to bolster its premium own-brand offering in the convenience space and agreed supply and distribution arrangements for over 80 new SuperValu Signature Tastes products for Northern Ireland. It didn’t stop there, as SuperValu was determined to ‘Win Christmas in 2018’, adding an additional 29 seasonal lines. SuperValu Signature Tastes was re-launched at a special Christmas event in November 2018. Guests, including press, media and influencers, were treated to multiple courses of food across the new range, as well as a branded goodie bag filled with ambient lines from the Signature Tastes Range. Furthermore, an extensive marketing campaign was launched to engage the consumer, including outdoor and print advertising; promotional leaflets; social media; recipes promoted online; instore and through local press; digital advertising; and bespoke PoS kits for retailers. Results were extremely strong, gaining a significant increase in like-for-like sales and high levels of awareness and brand impact.

 

BEST BRAND SPONSORED BY HENDERSON FOOD MACHINERY

BOOST

 

Boost’s mission for 2018 (its 15th year in NI) was to protect its number one position* and to increase sales by delivering a year-long programme of consumer and trade activity, designed to keep the brand at the forefront of customers’ minds. This was developed through strategic PR and promotional marketing methods. The Design a Can campaign engaged with consumers and created excitement. Organised in association with creative community YCN (You Can Now), it saw students from Northern Ireland redesign Boost’s Sugar-Free Energy 250ml can with the winning design manufactured and launched into the market as a limited-edition product featured on more than one million cans across the province. The winning student developed the campaign 15 Years a Giant, which was a nod towards the Giant’s Causeway. The We Love Local Road Trip, meanwhile, saw Boost travel 200 miles across NI to thank retailers for their support over the last 15 years. 2018 saw Boost taking the top three selling soft drink spots in NI convenience**, with sales of 32.9 million, up almost 2,000,000 units y-o-y. A carefully crafted PR, media and social media plan underpinned the campaign.

 

*IRI Marketplace Data Symbols and Independents 52 weeks unit and value sales to 10.09.17

**Data NI Convenience unit sales 52 weeks unit and value sales to 30.12.18

 

DALE FARM – DALE FARM ICE CREAM

 

In 2018, Dale Farm Ice Cream invested a significant proportion of its total marketing budget in its marketing strategy to further consolidate its excellent credentials in NI and raise awareness in RoI. With a more varied and vibrant product portfolio than ever, a 360 campaign was developed, Take Your Tastebuds Back, using outdoor, PoS, digital, social media and PR. The OOH campaign was a colourful expression of the brand, utilising 10 different formats, two of which were first-to-market channels, supported by a suite of PoS material, maximising standout at store level and building a path to purchase for the consumer to the freezer. Dale Farm Ice Cream embarked on an experiential consumer engagement campaign, hitting the road in a bespoke ice cream van on a Big Summer Road Trip. A detachable social media wall provided rich content. Facebook following increased by +7% and Instagram +9% across the two months; the campaign reached over 515,000 people. Widespread listings were secured in forecourt and convenience stores throughout Ireland, and expanded listings with multiples. DFIC was the fastest growing ice cream brand in both Northern Ireland and Republic of Ireland. Having grown its market share +7.5%, it is Northern Ireland’s number one ice cream brand.

 

HOVIS BAKERIES IRELAND – ORMO

 

At the start of 2017, ORMO was the fifth bestselling brand in the Northern Ireland Traditional Other Bakery category, and immediate action was required to re-build the brand and re-engage with new and existing

consumers. A Product Improvement programme was introduced to benchmark ORMO against its competitive set on core product characteristics, conducted independently at Loughry College, with improvement areas identified for Soda Farls, Fruit Loaf and Rolls.The key ORMO campaign in 2018 was to support the launch of a new premium range in September 2018. The NPD strategy was very explicit, ORMO an iconic Northern Ireland brand collaborating with two other successful NI agri-food brands in the form of Mash Direct and Ballyrashane Creameries. The campaign was fully integrated including a province-wide outdoor and PR programme to drive consumer awareness and engagement of the new ORMO range, with coverage achieved in all national papers. An extensive in-store campaign ensured strong stand out in the bakery aisle with display units and shelf branding. Sales exceeded all internal forecasts, and ORMO increased its share in both the Potato Farl and Wheaten Bread categories while, by the end of December, ORMO was the number two brand and the fastest growing (Source : Nielsen MAT 2018 Value).

IRWIN’S BAKERY – IRWIN’S BAKERY BRAND

 

Irwin’s Bakery celebrated 100 years baking in Northern Ireland in 2012. WD Irwin started in business in 1912 in Woodhouse Street, Portadown, as a grocer and was baking cakes and breads to sell in his shop. Business continued to prosper and with it employment; in 1995 when current premises were outgrown, W.D. Irwin and Sons moved to new purpose-built 100,000-square-foot premises at Carn. Now in 2015, the bakery employs over 450 staff and operates 24 hours a day, 363 days a year. Irwin’s manufactures a full portfolio of breads encompassing five brands: Irwin’s, Nutty Krust, Softee, Rankin Selection, and Howell’s. The company core values are reflected in every aspect of the business, from the bakery floor to marketing and advertising to the sales force – Quality, Integrity, Service, Energy, Wealth Creation, Family, Reduction of Waste and Community. The bakery sector is very much price led within Northern Ireland and dominated by both national and multi-national brands. Irwin’s has been baking since 1912; this wealth of knowledge and experience gives Northern Ireland consumers confidence in the range and has encouraged a loyalty across all brands under the Irwin’s umbrella. The strength of the Irwin’s brand provides a fantastic platform on which to launch new products.

 

MUSGRAVE – FRANK AND HONEST

 

In 2016, Musgrave developed premium, on-the-go artisan coffee brand, Frank and Honest. The on-the-go coffee brand was developed to capitalise on the emerging coffee market, using world-class technology that would deliver a consistently great cup of coffee. Ultimately, the objectives of the campaign were to establish the new brand’s position as the biggest and leading coffee brand on the island of Ireland and boost availability and visibility across Northern Ireland. Significant investment, innovation and a tongue-in-cheek marketing campaign all led to a rapid roll-out, to build the brand over the last two years. Cut to 2018, and Frank and Honest is now the largest-selling on-the-go coffee brand on the island of Ireland based in over 700 locations across the island, with over 110 of these in Northern Ireland. In 2018, sales objectives were met and exceeded, with over 2.5m cups of Frank and Honest Coffee sold in the first two years. Feedback from customers and retailers alike continues to exceed expectations, with the vast majority stating that Frank and Honest is the best ‘on-the-go’ coffee on the market. The Frank and Honest ground coffee was also recognised with a Great Taste award. A full range of new innovations, ways to market and a major new marketing campaign are in the pipeline for 2019.

 

BEST DIGITAL MARKETING CAMPAIGN SPONSORED BY mxb

 

KARRO FOOD GROUP – COOKSTOWN SOCCER SPECIAL

 

What has the World Cup got to do with sausages? It’s simple. Watching the tournament is a social experience – and like most social experiences, it typically involves food and drink – food like hot dogs, cocktail sausages and pies. Cookstown recognised the fit with their products, and the opportunity presented by the collective attention created by the World Cup provided the chance to position the brand as relevant to a Northern Ireland World Cup-watching audience. It used Facebook to target its selected audience and deployed a Custom Audience tool

in order to build out a profile that would most likely engage with the campaign, ie one that enjoyed football. Cookstown recognised that it needed to put relevant content in front of them. Its key principles for creative development were product-centric content that works for the brand, and sports-centric content that works for the fans. Recognising that timing was key to engagement, Cookstown wanted to be involved in the matches and become part of the audience’s watching experience. It did this by creating real-time responses to in-game activity, for those on the sofa (and those sitting beside them). A tongue-in-cheek version of real sports coverage. Ownable by Cookstown, perfectly pairing product giveaways with match activity.

 

KESTREL FOODS – #MAKEMEAMONKEYNUT

 

With Halloween traditionally a spike in the Forest Feast selling calendar, the brand wanted to activate a fully-integrated marketing plan, to emphasise the Monkey nut as a Halloween staple in the minds of the consumer, whilst reinforcing awareness of the brand as a leader in Halloween snacking. Digital media allowed Forest Feast to reach out to consumers in the most cost-effective way and encourage engagement directly with the target audience. Using the most popular Halloween snack, the Monkey nut, as an artistic medium, the competition winner and a friend would be transformed into their very own miniature pieces of art. Entry was kept very simple in order to maximise engagement; individuals had to tag a friend on the Forest Feast social channels, under the competition post, using the hashtag #MakeMeAMonkeynut. Monkey nut artist Steve Casino was commissioned to create a line-up of well-known Irish personalities to launch the campaign and help engage consumers. A six-week social media campaign programme was devised, with the launch both online through social media and offline at Tesco Taste Festival. A combination of both online content and outreach, coupled with traditional offline media and trade sell in driving traffic back online, resulted in sales uplift of 38.5% year on year.

 

HENDERSON WHOLESALE – 12 DEALS OF CHRISTMAS

 

To help maximise Christmas sales, Henderson Group implemented a 12-week strategy promoting weekly deals at market-leading prices across 458 of its stores, including SPAR, EUROSPAR, VIVO and ViVOXTRA. On October 1, the annual 12 Deals of Christmas campaign was launched, focusing on one weekly deal for each of the 12 weeks leading up to Christmas and finishing on December 23. The 12 Deals of Christmas campaign was advertised both online and offline. The campaign had three key objectives, increase average LFL weekly impressions by 30%, average LFL weekly video views by 25%, and increase LFL website traffic to the campaign landing page by 50%. Overall the campaign surpassed forecasted objectives and was very well received by both shoppers and retailers. To demonstrate the ‘halo effect’ created by the buzz of these deals, average basket spend across all stores participating increased by 5.1% with LFL sales increasing by 9% and LFL Punjana sales alone increased by 88%. Alongside healthy sales growth, this campaign encouraged a change in perception of SPAR, EUROSPAR, VIVO and ViVOXTRA, as shoppers perceived better quality and value from their local convenience store. This pioneering campaign therefore demonstrates how a well-planned and timely, integrated marketing approach is critical in meeting modern consumer demands.

 

MASH DIRECT – PETER RABBIT CAMPAIGN

 

Mash Direct was grown around family values. It was founded on a sixth-generation, family-run farm to make meal times easier for their customers; creating healthy and convenient vegetable side dishes, free from artificial nasties and with homemade taste and texture. In 2018, the Hamilton family (Martin, Tracy, Lance and Jack) decided to team up with Peter Rabbit for the launch of his new movie and to spread the word about Mash Direct’s award-winning vegetables. They seamlessly integrated the brand with Peter Rabbit over a range of platforms to gain maximum exposure for the movie launch, utilising followers on social media as well as pursuing traditional means of advertising such as PR, out of home, radio and email marketing. The marketing campaign reached 17,336,179 people. An on-pack promotion allowed customers to enter a prize draw to win a ‘Family holiday to Peter Rabbit’s Farmhouse in France’, with strong visibility on supermarket shelves. To close the campaign, Mash Direct hosted an exclusive screening of the Peter Rabbit Movie for media and influencers. Sales across the Peter Rabbit-branded lines increased by 11% during the campaign which has contributed to a record-breaking financial year with 35 Mash Direct packs sold every minute across the UK and Ireland.

 

MUSGRAVE – CENTRA LIVE WELL

In January 2018, Centra launched the Live Well programme, designed to motivate and inspire individuals and communities across Northern Ireland to get active and eat well. Using insights from 2017, the new ‘digital first’ campaign was born. A total of £1.25m was invested in the campaign, which included a 10-Week Plan, an extensive range of healthier food and drinks in-store, an enhanced series of family fun Run Together 5K events and a series of summer roadshows across Northern Ireland. The Centra Live Well digital marketing campaign was made up of an interactive online Live Well members’ hub on the Centra website, extensive social media content, email marketing and video content including fitness routines, weekly food plans and mindfulness tips. The campaign was supported by a team of highly credible ambassadors, influencers and brand advocates. The online experience was matched in-store with Live Well PoS and an extensive range of 700 healthy lines. The key objective was to connect with as many NI customers as possible, and in turn grow footfall and sales across the store network, which was met and exceeded. The 10-Week Plan achieved over 1,000 sign ups and thousands took part in six Run Together events. Digital engagement was also exceeded, achieving an online content reach of over 1m.

 

BEST ARTISAN CAMPAIGN SPONSORED BY FOOD NI

CHOICE PIZZA – PIZZADO

 

With the development of an authentic, artisan, hand-stretched pizza base, Pizzado’s chilled, convenient, high-quality product has proved to be very successful. Karen Boyd saw a gap in the market, bringing all her know how gleamed over 30 years in the pizza industry together with customers’ focus on provenance, quality and authenticity to enable this Pizzado product to be brought to market and grow the business to a new level. Pizzado bases are available locally in some Centra and Supervalu stores, while Indie Fude was first to champion the locally-produced bases alongside Russells Shop4You. With a recent sales launch in the UK, Pizzado bases are now available in farm shops in the north of England and continue to work with Aldi in preparation for the imminent launch across Ireland at the beginning of June.This continued growth will mean the development of a new factory down near Portaferry with the benefit of local employment and continued growth of the company.

HARNETT’S OIL

 

Harnett’s Oils grows sustainably, cold-presses, filters and bottles oilseeds from the family estate in the Barony of Iveagh, Co Down. The overall marketing objective for Harnett’s Oils as an artisan food producer is to increase awareness of the brand. The marketing strategy has changed from educating consumers on rapeseed oil to increasing awareness of Harnett’s Oil as a brand and the benefits of the business over its competitors. To achieve this, a number of goals were set out: use of Harnett’s recipes; use of social media; entering Blas na hEireann, Made in Ireland and Food Heartland awards; use of local markets and food events to sample the oils; and increasing media attention. To increase awareness of Harnett’s Oils the brand over the last 12 months, the business has been at a number of NI markets as well as food events such as Borough Market in London for St Patrick’s Day. At the start of the year, the business set up a blog and created a range of recipes posted on social media outlets every fortnight to increase the use of Harnett’s oil within a dish. The business also appeared on Farmers’ Country Showdown on UK BBC1 and BBC2, showing production and sales at fairs.

NATURAL UMBER

 

Natural Umber is a deliciously different apple cider vinegar launched in January 2018, which turned out to be an incredible year. Following an initial online-only launch through www.naturalumber.com and Amazon.co.uk, Natural Umber was quick to gain momentum through social media advertising and customer endorsement. Soon it was stocked in a number of the major delicatessens and health food stores in Northern Ireland. In May 2018, Ulster University independently taste-tested Natural Umber against the top three selling brands of ACV, and Natural Umber came out top in every single category including sweetness, aroma and flavour intensity (full results available on request). Then in August 2018, Natural Umber was awarded the coveted three stars from the Guild of Fine Food in London and shortlisted for the top prize, the Golden Fork for Northern Ireland. In September 2018, it scooped the Golden Fork, complimented by judges for its ’sweet apple character and a sharpness’. Success at the Great Taste awards in 2018, has led to growth within the market, with Natural Umber now widely available in over 100 independent high street delicatessens and health food stores in the UK and Ireland. Natural Umber also prides itself on consistent five-star customer reviews across Facebook and Google, which fuels growth.

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