Whittaker’s battles windy road to win April Ad Impact Award

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Whittaker’s took the top spot in the April Ad Impact Awards for its fun take on good ol’ fashioned kiwi honesty in the Swear By The Slab campaign by Assignment Group.

The ads generated a strong response from the 385 consumers surveyed, and Whittaker’s stood out as being particularly engaging. Harriet Dixon from Colmar Brunton says the campaign performed significantly above the normative levels of the research company’s database on many impact measures such as branding, ad enjoyment, ad distinctiveness, brand differentiation, brand appeal, talkability and likelihood to purchase.

Meaning it did well.

Colmar Brunton managing director Jacqueline Ireland says consumers are on board with this campaign, and engagement is having a positive impact on the appeal and interest in Whittaker’s.

“The consistent messaging around authenticity in their advertising really shines through.  It’s a distinctive promise that the Whittaker’s brand can own because of its roots, heritage and past performance… it’s very heartland, very Kiwi, very effective.”

But it was a windy road to get the top spot, with Meridian’s wind farm ads also putting in a solid performance. We’ve said that we were on board with Jeremy Wells and his spotlight in the campaign (we were bribed with some issues of Gusty, mind you), but audiences too say they’re interested in the brand and are willing to find out more. According to Ireland, this is a great example of what could be a complex message around sustainability, being delivered in a fun, simple, relevant and engaging way.

The awards also gave an honourable mention to the latest Tui execution. The TVC was a real staged event at the Tui brewery in Mangatanoka. This was reported as being appealing and entertaining to both sexes, showing the Tui boys being heartland Kiwi blokes in the classic setting of mates having brews at the rugby. Calling it well branded and memorable, Ireland says “…this looks to be the best performer in this campaign to date”.

But honourable mentions aside, it was Whittaker’s and its all too honest campaign that comes away the victor.

As per, Assignment Group are tight lipped about its winning client, even when we’re out to congratulate them.

Jasmine Griffin of Whittaker’s marketing team says they were obviously very happy to come out on top and the TVCs surpassed the company’s expectations.

“We’re very happy with what Assignment Group has done. We wanted to do something different for the peanut slab and these ads were a great fit… we’ve also found that they’re very popular with the young male audience which is always good.”

Griffin says that Whittaker’s has been evolving and working its way into the digital realm, occupying Facebook and Twitter as well as the rebranded Whittaker’s website.

“We got around 15,000 fans within the first three or four weeks of the campaign so it’s really been taking off,” she says.

Whittaker’s has more in store for its increasing fanbase, with more digital marketing planned and the possibility of extending the Swear By The Slab campaign.

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