31 December 2017
Well, that’s 2017 done and dusted, and what a cracking year it was at Cow, chock full of very successful ideas. As we gallop into 2018 here’s a quick look back at what we got up to in the last 12 months…
January: we hit the ground running (literally) in 2017 by opening ‘Run For Your Bun’ for David Lloyd Clubs – a cafe where diners could pay for their meal with exercise.
Only a few days after this cracking campaign we launched our wonderfully whimsical tour bus for dogs for MORE TH>N Pet Insurance. The green number K9 Routemaster pootled around central London, stopping at a number of parks and passing points of interest with a canine link.
Rounding off a jam-packed start to the year was ‘Workout Like a Dog’ for Blue Cross, where people quite literally exercised like dogs (including chasing a ball and bringing it back again and running around aimlessly).
February: For Valentine’s Day we announced the ‘Love Doctopus’ for Kraken Rum – that is, a real octopus (called Ken) who would match people on a blind date.
March: The beginning of Spring saw us launch our ‘Give Your Mobile The Boot’ campaign for MORE TH>N Car Insurance, designed to encourage motorists to put their phone in the glove box or boot when driving. As well as an arresting news gen we launched ‘prosthetic phones’: lumps of black plastic that resembled a smartphone but had no functions whatsoever, to help drivers safely get through their mobile withdrawal symptoms.
April: this was the month of Napercise for David Lloyd Clubs. Napercise was a workout class where participants did nothing but sleep for 45 minutes. It’s had a ludicrous amount of coverage all over the world (still coming in to this day), been rolled-out as a real class across a number of David Lloyd Clubs in the UK and Europe and even copied by other gym brands on the other side of the world.
May: May was the month we launched our new online TV show for Red Stripe lager with This Feeling. Fronted by Radio X DJ Gordon Smart, and with an A-list of celebrity guests, the music magazine show represents Red Stripe’s objective to give a platform to brilliant bands, both established and up-and-coming.
Hot on the heels of Red Stripe was Amstel, as we launched a major through-the-line content campaign for the Dutch beer brand to promote their sponsorship of RideLondon. This included partnering with Mark Cavendish to coach a team of amateur RideLondon cyclists all called Mark Cavendish.
Rounding out the Spring was the Bushmills Tour. To champion the spirit of independence, we hosted a four-day tour of the UK, taking established bands with indie roots to independent venues in Brighton, Manchester, London and Leeds.
June: we kicked-off the summer with a passport booth for pets (for MORE TH>N), supported Heineken’s Race To The Tower initiative (designed to help end the stigma around mental health in the workplace) and organised a star-studded opening of the new Harbour Club in Kensington.
July: July began with a bang… Or should that be a binge? Indeed, on behalf of Three, we opened the doors of the world’s first binge-watching hotel. Designed to drive awareness of Three’s new ‘Go Binge’ prop, the Bed N Binge hotel included dozens of suites themed around the most-binged Netflix shows, where every guest could binge-watch to their heart’s content on a swanky Samsung Galaxy S8.
August: from hot summer days to ice cold tubs, in a pub. To close our Amstel content campaign we launched the Cold Tub Pub during the RideLondon weekend. It was a pub for cyclists where all of the seats were replaced with ice baths. Here cyclists with weary legs could recover in a freezing cold tub while enjoying a bottle of Amstel. And the Cold Tub Pub landlord? Mark Cavendish, of course.
September: September was the month we cranked up the 90s nostalgia with the Kiwi Wild Show: an online wildlife show for Old Mout fronted by original Really Wild Show presenters Chris Packham and Michaela Strachan. The purpose of the show was to raise awareness of the endangered kiwi bird among British audiences, encourage them to support kiwi conservation efforts and drive donations. We achieved all of this and then some.
October: this was the month we activated our first idea for VisitScotland. That idea was the world’s first Instagram Travel Agency. Combining the trend for planning holidays on social media with an IRL bricks-and-mortar travel agency, customers visiting the pop-up chose their favourite Insta pic of Scotland from a giant digital screen and the helpful VisitScotland staff created their dream Scotland itinerary for them.
October also saw us launch another through-the-line campaign with Heathrow, with the Hemsley sisters taking on the roles of Food Instagram Ambassadors and giving airport passengers the hints and tips they need to take fab food pics for social media during their travels.
Before the month was out we’d also launched another episode of Red Stripe’s music TV show, made media waves with the announcement of the first Christmas movie for dogs (starring Louis Walsh, no less) for Universal’s Christmas 24 channel and launched Vitamin Me for David Lloyd Clubs: a unique exercise class designed to tackle Seasonal Affective Disorder.
November: November was the month of the oat as we launched the Porridge Grand Tour of Scotland for VisitScotland. The oat cuisine itineraries gave porridge-enthusiasts all the info they needed to enjoy an exclusively oaty holiday in Scotland, where they could even eat porridge for breakfast, lunch and dinner.
November also saw us bring the curtain down on our Phish & Chips national campaign for Santander. To raise awareness of phishing scams we created a fish and chips van where customers could pay for their meal with a scam email or text. The campaign was a great success and even saw us get Jenson Button behind the wheel of the Phish & Chips van.
December: December was a star-studded month. Not only did we launch a Christmas special of Red Stripe, featuring Holly Willoughby, we also teamed up with Heineken and Frank Bruno to raise awareness of mental health and social isolation at Christmas time, and made our mark for the Big Bang Fair by revealing a number of star constellations based on men and women that children today look up to. And, as we started the year with dogs, it seemed fitting they helped us bring the year to a close, as we launched the ‘Borrow My Corgi’ service for Three, to coincide with the arrival of The Crown season 2 on Netflix.