Cannes Lions

The Helpers

SAATCHI & SAATCHI, London / EE / 2019

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Demo Film






Mobile networks lack excitement and warmth, especially if you’re offering something invisible like data. At Christmas, we’re competing with brands that have all that and even more.

Under these circumstances, EE asked us to come up with a festive look and feel that could be rolled out at a national scale.

Their main objectives were to:

• Develop an ownable asset for EE that could cut-through the fierce Christmas competition

• Communicate EE’s offering in a way that was relevant and easy to grasp

Their budget was initially £35k and the look & feel would have to be rolled out to all 632 EE stores nationwide.


EE’s audience is as broad as possible – man and women, from 16 to 60 years old, spread across the country. Whatever we did, had to be able to speak with all of them.

Our solution was to create an entire world that brought tangibility to our offers and warmth to the in-store experience. A device that helped us to address our product and category challenges and that could also be universally liked: The Helpers and Their Machinery.

The Helpers and their workshop enabled us to communicate multiple Christmas offers quickly, in a way that was easy to understand while the personality of the characters brought an adorable face to a cold category. So much so, that they ended up forming the basis of our print and digital activity.


We had to work closely with EE to define what offers they would have. This allowed us to define different personalities for the characters, permitting us to tailor our design assets to deliver on each offer, such as music, gaming, VR.

From machines that doubled the data to others that could match a free gift with your purchase, we worked on 4 different scenarios that translated into digital, print and OOH formats. These machines were then adapted to digital formats according to the demand.

Our challenge was to bring all of this to life. Se we created 80cm tall characters that greeted customers into over 630 stores and made the environment of data and price splashes a lot more fun.

With the help of interactive screens, we gave people a sneak peek into the Helper’s world, where our customers could interact with them and even control parts of their machinery.


The result was a world that brought tangibility to our offers and warmth to EE stores nationwide. The Helpers rolled out to all 632 EE stores nationwide, inviting in over 4 million customers during the Christmas period.

In numbers, the campaign helped EE to have a 19% increase in footfall in its stores nationwide compared to the previous year, and achieved an impressive 85% higher footfall than the average of the category in the same period.

In terms of investment, a simple Christmas design brief became a full in-store, print and out of home take-over project. This was reflected on the campaign budget, which expanded 374% from beginning to end, growing from £35k to £165k.

Finally, The Helpers became EE's most effective festive platform to date, becoming part of the brand guidelines permanently. They are now a trademark and the official EE festive look from now on.

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2023, EE

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