Sunny, with a chance of meat: Hellers and Simpatico take the weather with them

The oft-stated wonder of the online realm for advertisers is the utility it provides and the creative opportunities it affords. And while that utility isn’t often harnessed as effectively as it could be, a campaign to launch Hellers’ new range of burger patties by Christchurch agency Simpatico, which recently rebranded from UMC, shows what can be done with a bit of nifty thinking. 

Media strategist Nathan Pilkington says the agency was looking for a way to launch the product outside of the conventional heavyweights of TV (although it has once again employed the services of long-serving meaty mascot Leigh Hart to spruik the product), while also demonstrating the great—and, this year for many, mostly mythical—Kiwi summer isn’t complete without Hellers. So it partnered with the Metservice, the country’s most-viewed weather website by a country mile, for a unique sponsorship that aimed to connect sun with patties.

Ideally, he says Hellers would benefit most by advertising on hot days that were appropriate for barbecuing (the constant rain in the north this summer has resulted in a significant decline in sales of sausages), but lead times–and cost—for traditional media made this virtually impossible. With the Metservice site, however, they were able to show a barbecue icon next to the sun icon when there was a good forecast. Visitors could then scroll over the BBQ icon and a message that read “summer ain’t summer in [the specific town]without Hellers” appeared. This was also supported with a takeover of all homepage advertising and a custom ad unit under the weather warnings.

“Integrating the BBQ and customised pop-up within the map has enabled Hellers to achieve some very unique consumer cut through and even emails from the public to the Metservice about how much they liked the advertising.


Agency: Simpatico

Client: Hellers

Client Contacts: Brydon Heller

Product: Hellers Burgers

Master Mind & Media Strategist: Nathan Pilkington

Senior Media Planner: Sarah Henderson

Creative Development: John Arrillaga

Account Manager: Alex Prince

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