The PR campaign for the launch of Burger King in South Africa was a whopping success for agency, Atmosphere Communications, whose sizzling strategy won the outfit the first Campaign of the Year award at Sunday’s 17th annual PRISM Awards.
“This was a stunning tactical campaign that over-delivered on objectives,” said chief judge Marilyn Watson. “There was great return on investment (ROI), with tangible results and deliverables. The campaign was powerful in its simplicity, embracing the multiplicity of channels available.”
The agency was tasked with creating hype around the launch of Burger King in Cape Town and in the process, drive demand for its whopper burger. It was a challenge, not least because long standing rivals had a strategy to outspend on advertising and outsmart with guerilla activations during the same time.
The Atmosphere team “leveraged the new superstar with a full armour of public relations and social media tools – stunts involving yachts, models and visits to five star hotels with a screaming flashmob of teenagers in tow, in addition to a high intense business and influencer publicity campaign. They also convinced the Mayor of Cape Town to give Burger King the key to the City”, the judges said.
It worked Media coverage exceeded expectations with 252 on-message articles in local, national and international media and more than 120 million media impressions across Facebook and Twitter. In terms of business results, 39 046 Whoppers sold during opening month (May 2013) on a target of 22 000); sales were at R2.2-million, exceeding expectations by 50%. After two weeks, Burger King ran out of Whopper buns – and had to fly in stock from Europe. Burger King was inundated with requests from potential franchisees and landlords and received hundreds of applications within the first month.
Winning agencies were global public relations firm FleishmanHillard SA,which won Best Large Public Relations Consultancy, another new award. “FleishmanHillard SA impressed with its customer base and the quality of the work they do – and this is reflected in their sustained business success,” said cluster judge Johanna McDowell. “Their investment in developing young people is commendable and they are a clear leader in the field.”
Atmosphere PR took Best Mid Sized Agency. McDowll said the agency was a leader “in the strategic use of research and measurement. But behind their hardnosed businesses focus is a soft heart for the community. Their focus on employee development will ensure they remain a group many young people aspire to join”.
Positive Dialogue won Best Small PR Consultancy and the Best Use of an Event to Build / Change Reputation (Event Management) for the Robben Island Balloon Run.
PR Worx was a winner in terms of individual honours. Shannon Roscher was awarded Best Up and Coming PR Professional; Chantal Riley won Best Public Relations Professional and Madelain Roscher was honoured with the Lifetime Achievement award. PR Worx also won the Community Relations award for its work on the deskbag campaign.
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All the winners can be found here.