EBLEX - The horsemeat scandal: Case Study


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How EBLEX used newsbrands to ensure they maintained consumer confidence in locally sourced fresh meat during the horsemeat scandal.

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EBLEX - The horsemeat scandal: Case Study

  1. 1. How EBLEX used Newsbrands to deliver a reactionary and topical message that ensured we maintained consumer confidence in locally sourced fresh meat during the horsemeat scandal Background: In the wake of the on-going horsemeat scandal in February of 2012, we were highly concerned that this could negatively impact our client EBLEX who are responsible for promoting English Beef and Lamb in the UK (supported by the British farming bodies). It was the perfect time to encourage British consumers to buy quality assured, traceable British produce. Objectives: In order to deliver confidence and reassurance in British sourced fresh meat produce we knew we had to raise awareness of the Red Tractor and Quality assured marks found on beef, lamb, pork and bacon packets. We needed to disrupt and speak to a mass audience in a way which Eblex hadn’t done before. We needed to speak to our consumer in an environment that would spark conversations with friends, family and colleagues. Challenge: Our challenge was a big one as EBLEX usually invested in print titles such as Good Housekeeping, and other monthly magazines. Running in the country’s biggest papers was a scary thought for them! Firstly, we had to convince the client to spend their advertising budget in this way. We knew we would deliver against awareness and perception objectives if we invested in Newsbrands. This was an entirely new approach for Eblex but, after few short meetings, they bought into our approach! Strategy: By focusing our spend Newsbrands we knew we could reach 25.1 million chief shoppers in one week, which is almost double the reach of magazines (where EBLEX usually spend). We also know that Newsbrands hold significant influence over the nation with 82% of people believing that newspapers have “power and influence” over their readers – this was hugely powerful environment we knew we could take advantage of. Execution: Trust and relevancy meant that Newsbrand titles were the perfect place to carry ads that highlighted the provenance of fresh beef, lamb, pork, bacon and carry the recognisable imagery if the quality assured logos. "Quality Assured. Now more than ever, it's important to know that the meat that you're buying comes from a trusted source." The press campaign had to be secured and booked in four days. Our client and press team worked tirelessly to achieve the best positions possible as well desired page running order for both EBLEX and the NFU across all titles. Across a 1 week period we delivered nearly 70% of our audiences at a frequency of 3 through a multiple half page executions. Results: The risk paid off! Anecdotal evidence from retailers has since suggested that consumer demand for assured fresh meat has remained robust during the horse meat scandal and consumers are increasingly looking for assurance marks when buying meat products. Advertising awareness and recall was at its highest level since we started recording and a Kantar poll also revealed that 20 per cent of consumers indicated that they would buy more fresh meat and 13 per cent would buy more locally sourced meat. Jane Ritchie-Smith, head of consumer marketing for EBLEX, said: “We know that from the anecdotal evidence we are hearing from multiple and independent retailers that consumer confidence in fresh meat is still strong. Our advertising campaign reiterates that by looking for the Red Tractor and QSM assurance marks on packs of fresh beef, lamb, pork and bacon, consumers can rest assured that what they are buying is fully traceable." This shift in perception and results shows what can be achieved by taking a risk in the Newsbrands environment which provided the perfect place to communicate our topical message
  2. 2. Appendix Creatives
  3. 3. Quality assured marks Audience