James Bamford
Colorist at The Mill
London, United Kingdom
TitleL’Eau De Chris
Campaign L’Eau De Chris
Advertiser Campaign Against Living Miserably (CALM)
Brand CALM / Topman
PostedAugust 2018
Business Sector Charities, Foundations, Volunteers
Story Synopsis;As a little-known UK charity working to raise awareness of men’s welfare issues, CALM wanted to stand out on World Mental Health Day with a campaign to raise awareness that suicide remains the biggest killer of young British men aged under 45.;The key objective was to drive fame for CALM and its core message – encouraging men to speak freely about depression, anxiety and suicidal thoughts.;However, in 2017 mental health had emphatically arrived on the national agenda, with a number of high-profile campaigns running across the year, featuring everyone from A-list celebrities to royalty. And the male suicide statistic was not new.;Our challenge was to deliver a high-impact campaign and a fresh approach to the issue without getting lost in the background conversation or being seen as over-earnest or worthy, that would deliver national media coverage, social media conversation and boost visits to the CALM website.;Strategy;Working in partnership with CALM, we needed to cut through on World Mental Health Day in a way that would resonate CALM’s young male audience, without being predictable or shocking. We needed a third way.;By themselves, however impressive they are, statistics can be underwhelming, especially when so many noble causes are competing for attention.;So our strategy was to bring together humour, society’s preoccupation with celebrity, and the power of social media to disrupt.;The stars aligned when TOPMAN – a longterm supporter of CALM – signed Love Island audience favourite Chris Hughes. Chris had inspired admiration among viewers for not being afraid to shed a tear, and had talked candidly about his personal struggles with anxiety.;We knew he’d be an ideal ambassador to put the highly sensitive subject of suicide on the agenda in a way that younger audiences, and mainstream national media, would be receptive to.;Relevancy;Harnessing the power and influence of mainstream media (and their appetite for celebrity) was at the heart of this bold campaign for CALM.;An immaculately choreographed ‘tease and reveal’ PR campaign capitalised on reality TV star Chris Hughes’ fame to convince the nation that celebrity culture had gone so far as to profit from bottled water infused with his tears.;Perfectly targeted pre-briefings ensured media delivered the requisite incredulous headlines.;And deliberately eschewing video for a traditional press conference hosted by Chris created a powerful reveal of #dontbottleitup – the real campaign – driving an unprecedented 1,800% web traffic uplift.;Outcome;L’Eau de Chris rewrote the rules about how mental health charities behave in order to engage with young men in the UK. Thanks to Chris Hughes, CALM’s message about male suicide led the news agenda and social media conversation on World Mental Health Day. It also broke all records for visits to the CALM website, where men can seek help.;The disruptive tease and reveal campaign exceeded all expectations, taking young male mental health into national news, supplements and celebrity lifestyle titles – new territory for discussion about male suicide.;From 9th October the campaign delivered the unprecedented mainstream media coverage that we knew would engage with our target audience of young men;• 89 national and lifestyle articles;• 14 national broadcast news features;• 120m social impressions in the first 48 hours;• 5m organic video views;• 1.3m Facebook impressions;• 35,000 mentions on Twitter – 58% follower increase on CALM’s Instagram feed – 94% positive sentiment;Most importantly, it drove an unprecedented 1,800% increase in 18- to 24-year-olds visiting the CALM website, with 95% first-time visitors – powerful figures given that CALM believes that if men feel able to seek help, hundreds of suicides could be prevented, and hundreds of families and friends spared the unimaginable sadness of losing a loved-one in this way.;This incredible campaign proved the power of PR to deliver the most vital outcome we could have wished for: vulnerable young men in crisis opening up to a fresh shot at life.;Execution;On Monday 9 October, L’Eau de Chris, a bottled water “infused with a genuine Chris Hughes tear”, was launched with spoof visuals showing Chris posing in TOPMAN boxer shorts holding a bottle of his new water brand, with a tear running down his cheek.;Media coverage in top-tier national titles including The Sun, Shortlist and Evening;Standard was incredulous: celebrity absurdity had surely reached new levels. But they;were in on the act.;The following day, national media were invited to a L’Eau de Chris launch event, streamed live on Facebook. Here Chris revealed his own struggles with depression and announced that it was not L’Eau de Chris, but Lu-Di-Crous.;Ludicrous that suicide remained the biggest killer of young men in the UK, because men “bottle up” their emotions. In an emotional talk, Chris urged his audience to join the conversation using the #DontBottleItUp hashtag.;Campaign Description;Together with CALM we commissioned research that revealed that 84% of men in the UK “bottle up” their emotions. It was precisely these impulses that CALM wanted to challenge, the unspoken rules that stop men asking for help.;Indeed, this idea of “bottling up” emotions inspired our central idea – playing on Chris Hughes’ celebrity status and also subverting the often-shallow world of celebrity culture.;The campaign would launch three days before World Mental Health Day, when Chris would post a sequence of teaser images on his Instagram reaching 1.9m followers, announcing simply: ‘Launches 10.10.17’.;The day before, we launched a campaign for new bottled water: L’Eau de Chris “infused with a genuine Chris Hughes tear” available exclusively from major fashion retailer TOPMAN to drive a spike in mainstream media attention.;And on the 10th, the reveal: it’s actually ‘lu-di-crous’ that suicide remains the biggest killer of young men. #DontBottleItUp.
Media Type Social Media
Music Prod Company
Production Company
Account Director
Creative Director
Creative Director
Art Director
Agency Producer
Agency Producer
Director of Photography (DOP)
Post-production Producer
Post Production
Music Producer
Music Producer
Client counsel and account lead Grace Henwood
Media relations lead David Frossman
Senior media relations manager Jamie Weeks
Senior client counsel / strategy / creative Warren Johnson
Media relations Gabby Griffin
Media relations Holly Glackin
Creative Simon Hipwell
Creative Matt Pam
Art direction of Chris Hughes creative Augustine Cerf
Writing creative copy Lauren Peters
Client counsel and account lead Ben Clark
Photography Rankin
Creative production Catherine Griffiths
Creative production Jade Evans
Photography production Rankin
Production Kat Hackethal
Editor Dan Fernbach
Editor Gareth Philips
Post production James Bamford
Sound design Tom Heddy
Idea Creation BMB
Production BMB
Media Placement HAVAS LONDON


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