DEVISING A CREATIVE AND INTEGRATED CAMPAIGN

The Client

Founded in 1920 by Lucian Ercolani OBE, ercol is a name synonymous with British furniture design, expert craftsmanship and a commitment to superior quality that is revered by an ever-increasing international audience.

Celebrated for its signature mid-century collections as well as an expanding portfolio of contemporary ranges, an authentic passion for design has been at the heart of ercol since its inception.

Offering a wealth of living, dining and bedroom solutions, ercol’s furniture is designed by an accomplished in-house team.

In addition, collaborations with industry talent and leading fabric houses have allowed ercol to draw on global influences to establish itself as a world leader in furniture design.

Challenge

Evolve ercol’s previous strategy, which focused purely on traditional print media in home interest titles and national press.

Create one unified strategy where the brand could reach a younger audience via bloggers and influencers as well as journalists and stylists.

Broaden consumer awareness of new products and core collections rather than relying solely on the Originals range.

Results

48 million

eyeballs reached through editorial coverage

30

online links – and 23 follow links secured

300,000

users targeted across Instagram

AN INTEGRATED CAMPAIGN

With ercol already an established brand with a rich heritage, the challenge was to elevate the brand to reach and engage with a new audience with a passion for design and craftsmanship. It was essential not to rely on ercol’s history, as to make the brand current, Cool Blue needed to present ercol’s character as one that is forward-thinking and constantly innovating — a key player in today’s design industry.

Therefore, Cool Blue devised a PR campaign which incorporated a fully integrated approach to target this new and younger audience, as well as layering activity that would still appeal to ercol’s core customer base. The team immediately expanded the media outreach to include more design-led and younger titles, as well as relevant online media and influencer social feeds. Developing meaningful relationships with influencers and tastemakers was also essential in securing ercol’s position as a contemporary brand with an iconic design status.

Cool Blue also researched newsworthy and unexpected collaboration ideas to attract new customers and executed its first project in year one of the campaign.

Broadening the Ercol audience

As part of the original brief, the team focused on reaching out to a new type of consumer. One who is younger, affluent, hungry for design and well-versed in brands with a multi-channel approach.

The campaign focused on generating a range of on and offline coverage as well as establishing presence on well-read social channels and blogger feeds.

The result — ercol regularly features in design-led titles and channels that reach a younger and design savvy consumer.

Influencer Relationships

Influencer Relationships

Building relationships with key bloggers and tastemakers is an essential part of reaching new and younger audiences. This activity did not replace traditional media relations, but simply acted as another layer to the PR campaign, supporting the evolution of ercol’s audience.

Targeting new audiences who are actively looking for home inspiration ideas was a fantastic way to engage with the next generation of ercol fans. Therefore, Cool Blue identified a hot list of quality influencers who specialised in a variety of fields such as design, styling, renovation and lifestyle driven content.

This campaign explored every level of influencer activity, from paid for large-scale activity to gifted product and product loaned for styling. This created unique content as well as allowing for an exclusive ‘behind the scenes’ insight for these new audiences.

The result — ercol continues to be a key player in the blogging and influencer community.

ERCOL x 2LG LOVE SEAT

ERCOL x 2LG LOVE SEAT

In 2019 Cool Blue proposed an exciting product collaboration to coincide with Pride Month in June and the London Pride Festival in July, with all proceeds from the products going to select LGBTQ charity partners.

The goal of the campaign was to champion diversity through a combination of great design, colour and collaboration, whilst reaching a wide range of audiences via the press and social media, so choosing the right partners was key.

From the proposed list, ercol and Cool Blue selected the award-winning interior design studio, 2LG, as its collaboration partner, and Stonewall and Pride in London as its charitable partners.

With an agreement in place to create a limited-edition collection, Cool Blue then set about developing a package of content and activity that would satisfy all channels and parties. This included hosting meetings and factory visits with 2LG to create a unique and striking collection, selecting and managing the charity partners, as well as creating editorial photography, video content and a detailed media launch plan.

Together ercol and 2LG created four limited-edition Originals Love Seats that offered a fresh twist on the classic rainbow palette. By combining the rainbow – a powerful symbol of the LGBTQ community – with 2LG studio’s distinctive take on colour and ercol’s iconic approach to design, the finished pieces were not only newsworthy, but covetable as collectable pieces too.

These four limited-edition Love Seats were then used to support and champion Pride activities throughout June and July, from the Pride Pop-Up Shop in Covent Garden to the Gala Dinner, where the designs were auctioned off with all proceeds going to Pride in London and Stonewall.

ERCOL video

THE RESULT

The collaboration had immediate pick up with both the media and the wider social community, from national press such as the Sunday Times, to design-led online titles such as Dezeen and ArchiPanic as well as the best-selling gay magazine, Attitude.

Strong, shareable imagery ensured that the organic reach of the campaign on social media was incredibly strong, with multiple mentions from key figures in the design industry as well as viral re-shares across the wider social community. The launch post on ercol’s Instagram feed is still the most ‘liked’ and ‘commented on’ post to date.

As well as extensive press and social coverage, the collaboration also raised more than £3,000 for Stonewall and the Pride in London charitable foundation.

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