Honey Thank You for PlayStation 4

TUTKOVBUDKOV, Volgograd / SONY / 2018

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Sony PlayStation adapts its global campaigns for other regions via translation & voice-over.

In 2018 Russia, this approach yields no results since the majority of 'core gamers' have

already bought the console, and current advertising does little to sway others to join the


Consequently, the goal was to produce an exclusive PlayStation 4 PR campaign for Russian

audiences based on a positive local insight.

Ideally, the campaign had to be a viral one, making a massive buzz on the media, and

dominating the news prior to or during the Father's Day holidays in Russia.


Target audience.

The campaign specially targeted middle to upper class men and women from the age of


Media planning.

The campaign was designed to get earned media by creating a thematic newsworthy

event on a Russian Father's Day. To ensure that the media would pick up on the news, 102

ambient surfaces were used in 6 major cities making the creative execution almost



A customer-centric approach was based on the main insight of this campaign with regard

to its core audience: a tongue-in-cheek message that raises awareness and heightens

interest among targeted consumers of the product. It encourages Russians to purchase

Sony PlayStation 4 as a gift that is welcomed and celebrated just like a birth of a child.


On Russian Father's Day, February 23, messages 'Honey Thank You for PS4' were scotchtaped,

watercolored or sprayed on various unusual surfaces, from frozen rivers to football

stadiums in 6 cities across Russia.

Stylistically, 'Honey Thank You for PS4' messages mimicked a Russian tradition of

celebratory 'graffitis' left in vicinity of maternity homes wherein men would often thank

their partners for giving birth to a child by saying 'Honey thank you for the kids'.

The first news broke in the early hours of 23 February on a major gaming website, creating

a snowball effect among major gaming communities in social media. By the end of the

day, news made it to the mainstream media, with over 100 publications and 3 TV news


23 February is a national holiday and a day-off in Russia, a 'slow-news-day', which helped

the campaign to dominate over the news that day.


Tier 1: Media Outputs

>100 publications that largely focused on the photographic evidence of the 'Honey Thank

You for PS4' graffiti. The tone and message delivery mostly (71 out of 100) done in a

positive way, acknowledging the success of the campaign and the cultural relevance. Over

80% of the publications and respondents on social networks reacted positively to the

creative idea, with a consensus that said: 'Few large international companies get Russian

culture as well as Sony does'.

Tier 2: Target Audience Outcomes

Sony PlayStation 4 remains the most popular and known product on the market in Russia.

However, the perception of its advertising and public image saw improvements since the

launch of the campaign, with half of the respondents favourably comparing this

PlayStation Russia's campaign to the [rival] Nintendo Russia's recent advertisement that

also tried to rely on local insights. Respondents note that PlayStation outdid Nintendo by

being 'more savvy and brave in their communication'. In total, this PlayStation Russia

campaign generated over 10,000 responses in social media, with over 60% being of

positive or encouraging nature.

Tier 3: Business Outcomes

PR-wise, this was the most effective PlayStation Russia campaign to date, with over 100

publications in mass media (including 6 foreign press hits), 20 million people reached, and

3$ million in PR value against 0$ in PR spending. Business-wise, Father's Day 2018 was the

most profitable for PlayStation 4 in 2 years, making PS4 console number one best-selling

product in this category during the February holidays.

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