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Silver Cannes Lions
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Why is this work relevant for Social & Influencer?

1-With just one post, retweeted by our chefs, we addressed directly Robert De Niro. And we not only managed to make lots of people (and the media) support our request, but also managed to get to him thanks to how it spread.

2-Our campaign wasn't about how we used the main influencer but about how we got him to work for us, which in part has to do with how we used the chefs as influencers.


Madrid Fusion is one of the most important gastronomy summits in the world. It brings together the best chefs. But in May 2021, after the pandemic, it needed a very strong push for people to attend the festival. On one hand, restriction had been lifted up weeks before the event. On the other hand, it had been a very tough year for this particular sector, that couldn't adapt to the delivery system.

The goal was to get all the attention possible, both for the festival and for the haute cuisine sector in particular, to make as many people as possible attend Madrid Fusion from all over the world.

Describe the creative idea

Madrid Fusion is a gastronomic summit that brings together the best chefs in the world. We take food very seriously. And that’s why we wanted Robert De Niro to star in our next campaign. We didn’t have enough money to pay him. But we had something that is worth even more than money.

We asked 5 of the greatest chefs in the world to create a Unique Tasting Menu together, just once and just for one person. And we publicly offered it to Robert De Niro, in exchange for promoting our festival. If he didn’t accepted in 48 hours, we would open the proposal to other talents.

Against all odds, he did answer saying “I’m in, of course I’m in”, just before the deadline, when we were actually about to offer it to other celebrities.

This proved that the food we promote can pay for Robert De Niro's cache.

Describe the strategy

We decided to publicly negotiate with Robert De Niro and address him directly on social media, risking being sued just for mentioning his surname on a video. We did it for two reasons: one was the media buzz we could get, and the other one was that we didn't have another way to approach him.

We used the chefs account as influencers that promoted the campaign, that would reach exactly the audience we needed (foodies), and even other celebrities in case De Niro didn't accept.

Although we couldn't assure he would answer, we knew he is a foodie who even owns a Michelin star restaurant, so he could really understand the value of this experience and take it into consideration.

The call to action was a whole video, but the message was simple: "Would you promote our festival in exchange for food instead of money?"

Describe the execution

On May 24th 2021, one week before the event, we posted a video on twitter with the proposal.

The media took notice the same day, and the day after, it was everywhere.

But time passed and we didn't have an answer. So we started to think that we would have to reach other celebrities.

But 10 hours before the deadline, we got an email from him asking for an official confirmation that those 5 chefs would be cooking in person for him. We sent back a signed letter and extended the deadline, just in case. He sent a confirmation video 24h after the official deadline, but it was fine for us.

Due to covid restrictions, he could only come to Madrid almost one year later, on 1st March 2022. The chefs got together and prepared the menu for him at the Ritz Hotel, and he promoted the festival, as agreed.

List the results

-We sold out every ticket for the festival.

-We reached more than 180M people with the campaign in 32 different countries.

-We got more than 4.5M media impressions, worth almost €21.450.000, with no media investment at all.

-Every National TV channel talked about the campaign at least three times: when the video was posted, when De Niro accepted the deal, and when he came to Madrid for the meal.

-Haute cuisine became one of the hot topics during the campaign, and Spanish gastronomy was revalued.

-And most importantly: WE GOT ROBERT DE NIRO TO PROMOTE OUR FESTIVAL, and we didn't pay him nor any agent or lawyer. This means we saved up to €1.000.000 in celebrity endorsement.

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