INITIATIVE, London / LEGO / 2019
In January 2018, LEGO was experiencing a slow down in sales growth, and tasked The Agency with creating a marketing strategy for LEGO Technic that would accelerate growth and drive a 21% increase in sales revenue.
Using our proprietary growth analytics tool, Accelerator, we identified that 40% of growth in 2017 had come from just two products, and both were complex builds at high price points. We then held workshops with LEGO’s design team, and found that due to the complexity of build both of these products were more suited to adults than children. However, LEGO Technic had never advertised to adults as consumers before, only adult gifters.
Using Recode, our proprietary cultural analytics tool, we identified a new audience for LEGO Technic: the 'tinkerer', people who had a passion for building and fixing things and a core desire for understanding how they work. But we had a challenge to overcome; our Tinkerer audience saw LEGO Technic as a toy, and not a serious pursuit – a huge barrier to purchase and something that only the most complex LEGO Technic engineering could help us overcome.
We decided to adopt a similar strategy to a luxury brand and use products that make a strong statement about the brand to tell a compelling story and reposition the brand. We then created culturally impactful moments to connect with our audience, and used a clever targeting strategy to ensure we kept the more ‘toy-like’ LEGO Technic products away from the eyes of our ‘tinkerer’ audience. We launched a communications platform called 'Build for Real’, and demonstrated that a LEGO Technic build could be just as demanding and challenging as a kit car, or engineering project.
We created the ultimate articulation of our 'Build for Real’ platform; life-size, working replica of a Bugatti Chiron, made purely from LEGO Technic, down to the 5.3 horsepower driven by by 2,300 LEGO Technic motors!
This was the perfect realisation of the engineering prowess of Technic and a powerful tool in driving reappraisal with our new audience, We created an integrated communications plan that teased the launch of the Bugatti on C4’s F1 coverage, utilised a bespoke advertorial partnership with Sky Sports and the Italian Grand Prix to launch the product, and then we used our Audience Management Platform (AMP) to follow up with direct response messaging about the full LEGO Technic portfolio of products to our new audience through digital channels.
2018 was a runaway success, hitting our target of 21% sales growth, and exceeding it by a further 11%. Nicola Mellor, the LEGO Technic product lead said “Despite some challenging sales targets, this has been one of the most successful years we’ve ever had on LEGO Technic. The Agency challenged us to think radically differently, and applied a culture-lead philosophy that went far beyond media and into marketing strategy. By creating Cultural Velocity, LEGO Technic has grown sales 11% above our already challenging target for 2018."