Cannes Lions

AXE BRAND PROMOTION

EDELMAN, New York / UNILEVER / 2011

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Overview

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Credits

Overview

Description

AXE catapulted to success as a hip, current brand when it launched in 2002, but by 2009 it was losing its lustre. That year, AXE set out to regain its grip as an aspirational lifestyle brand for 18-24 year-old guys so it developed a unique and immersive brand experience: AXE Lounge, an exclusive destination attended by celebrities, musical artists, influencers, guys and girls. Through use of traditional and social media the brand brought the AXE Lounge experience to life for the masses. Coming off the success of AXE Lounge in 2010, the brand decided to go bigger in 2011 with 3 nights at Super Bowl XLV in Dallas. Featuring performances by Grammy award winner Cee Lo Green, Pitbull and Diplo, a bevy of celebrities and athletes in attendance, and real-time content amplified on Facebook and Twitter, AXE Lounge set a new benchmark for lifestyle marketing. AXE Lounge generated 156MM earned media impressions in one week with video performances featuring Pitbull and Cee Lo Green reaching 4MM views in three weeks and counting.

Execution

Coming off the success of AXE Lounge in 2010, the brand decided to go even bigger in 2011, and acquired exclusive branding rights to a Dallas club for the duration of the weekend. AXE Lounge capitalized on Super Bowl’s ability to organically attract celebrities, and for 3 nights, the club hosted a bevy of celebrities, athletes and influencers; with performances by Grammy winner Cee Lo Green, Pitbull and Jermaine Dupri. AXE partnered with Vevo.com, a Universal Music Group/YouTube joint venture to produce branded videos for distribution on multiple online channels, and DanwithAXE, the brand’s social media "voice", amplified content on Facebook and Twitter, targeted online media and influencers, and engaged fans. Combined with outreach to sports, entertainment, lifestyle, and news media, AXE Lounge secured continual coverage and exceeded benchmarks.

Outcome

In 2011, AXE Lounge became one of the hottest Super Bowl events to hit Dallas. Hosting over 25 celebrities, professional athletes and influencers, the event generated 156MM earned media impressions in top tier outlets such as Associated Press, OK! Magazine, US Weekly, New York Post, NYT.com, USAToday.com, E! News and more. Additionally, branded Cee Lo and Pitbull video content generated 4MM views in 3 weeks on Vevo/YouTube. The online engagement with fans on Facebook and Twitter during Super Bowl weekend resulted in more than 10MM digital impressions and 4.9 MM Twitter impressions. AXE Lounge is recognized by Unilever globally as best-in-class and a new direction for AXE lifestyle marketing.

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