Cannes Lions

AXE Music - Tuning AXE Back Into Culture Through Music

UNILEVER, Rotterdam / UNILEVER / 2019

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• Situation

It was the beginning of 2018 when AXE, the world’s largest male grooming business, rounded a decade of stagnant growth worldwide. The new 'Find Your Magic' platform offered the brand a modern reboot by engaging young men with the products - which had become an increasingly difficult task, as young men aged 14-21 years commonly avoid product ads.

• Brief

Launch AXE X Martin Garrix limited edition body spray.

• Objectives

Sell out AXE X Martin Garrix cans within the period of the campaign.


We partnered with #1 DJ in the world Martin Garrix to launch a limited edition body spray. We then created and integrated that product into a music video for Martin’s latest track “Burn Out”. In the demo, we follow a modern story of attraction where the girl is as much of a hero as the guy (and he doesn’t “get the girl” in the end).


How could we launch AXE’s most innovative body spray in years, in such a way that young men would care? By making it more of a new track release than a product launch. Two principles guided our way there: build anticipation and drive conversation within Martin Garrix’s community, as a way to spread the news; and make it true to AXE by fully rooting it in the brand territory of attraction. Music moves you, AXE Music moves you closer.


• Implementation

The film was shot on set in Hungary. Two identical laundromats were built. While we shoot in one, the other was dressed and prepared for the next set up.

• Timeline

Coordination, planning and creation of the track took nearly 6 months. The shoot itself was done over two very long and efficient days.

• Placement

Our biggest media partner was Martin Garrix himself, by using his social and YouTube channels we were able to reach an incredible number of people.

• Scale

Despite being shot in a studio the scale was fairly large from a set/art direction point of view. Every world had to be built, designed and lit for that one moment.


• Reach

The video has 50M+ views on Youtube to date (95% organic); The campaign had a total of 53M impressions with €425k media spent.

• Engagement

A young male demographic spent 4X more time watching the content on Youtube versus the average of previous AXE product ads.

• Impact

Daily web traffic rose by 636% with a 30% click to buy rate, while the can sold out in stores on day one. The campaign created 12 million new contacts that we will be able to retarget with future AXE comms.

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