Comfort Fabric Softener arrived in South Africa with intentions to establish itself as the market leader immediately.
With over fifty years of family-tested and trusted quality, Comfort is globally known for being baby soft and friendly – the drop of liquid to represent a mother’s touch of love.
South Africa’s high birth rate (22 per 1000) and being a young country overall (25.5 years old) would make it a gold mine for the brand.
- New Generation Awards - Gold - Most Innovative Digital Campaign
- New Generation Awards - Silver - Best App Developed
- Product of the Year 2014 - Nielsen Comsumer Survey
Win the hearts of South African mothers as the number one fabric softener and make it an essential ingredient in their laundry routine.
Continue revenue growth of the brand
Increase penetration amongst our target audience and become the fabric softener market leader
Comfort is the best scent and softness for your family
Grow channel numbers and engagement
New players in the market space and the increased penetration by no-name brands were driving category costs down.
Comfort, who operates at a price premium, needed to differentiate itself from the market and show it’s added value to win mothers over.
All category options offered subtle differences in softness, causing Mum’s to purchase brands based on scent.
The lasting smell of fabric softeners became a proxy for value.
Enduring freshness for your family’s clothes
True freshness that lasts and lasts
Show your love with lavender
To make significant roads, we’d need a big message to become engrained in South African families and stay devoted to the brand over time.
Landing this message outside of the shopping aisles was essential. Not only were competitors more affordable, but Comfort was lost in the sea of sameness on the shelves.
Online communities were quickly becoming the go-to destination for people to seek advice and tips on a deeper level of engagement and trust. Facebook circles and forums allowed people to learn and share in a quick and convenient way.
But, we needed to establish a safe and welcoming place for mothers to flock to through an exciting and entertaining lens to differentiate ourselves from platforms and accounts dedicated to these type of discussions – allowing us to grow our channels and spread our message far and wide without being bogged down by other issues and topics outside the brand’s remit.
Content areas to build our community
An additional challenge was to include the global TVC we adopt into the mix. This focused on the teenage daughter of the Comfort family having relationship troubles in a slightly bizarre metaphorical way.
Regardless, we wanted to bridge the gap by extending the freshness qualities associated with value, be the proxy for love a mother shares, as demonstrated in our TVC.
To spread the message effectively and simultaneously recruit fans to the page, we reached out to partners for prizes and coupons we could use as incentives. However, our main goal was to develop a mechanic which would convert recruits into an engaged audience and advocate for Comfort to their friend circles.
Like true love, Comfort Lavender Bloom’s true freshness “lasts and lasts”. And as we couldn’t bring the wonderful smell to computer screens, we thought we’d show our consumers with the help of ads driving to our one-click-install browser extension, allowing us to keep our audience linked to the brand online wherever they visited, and top of mind in store whenever they visited.
We developed a 3-month engagement plan and digital campaign through a Lavender-themed, virtual Easter egg hunt.
With no access to the packaging to share our message, targeted ads, page-takeovers, advertorials and classic word of mouth helped the campaign turn the internet lavender for our target audience, and triggered people to get involved.
Comfort Lavender bottles appeared around the internet, reminding them of the rewarding hunt and love of Comfort by adding purple accents to popular websites like Facebook and Google.
Regularly scheduled social hints and tips shared on our social channels helped consumers discover and collect more bottles which would appear periodically and sporadically across the web to give you a friendly nudge – the more you find, the better your chances of winning a honeymoon holiday and instant prizes, and a way for us to show the love back.
By monitoring our customer’s browser experience, we were able to observe and track the URLs they visited, time on site and purchase actions or reading activity.
These valuable insights informed us in profile development – building out personas, behaviors and even preferred partners – and then recycled the URLs back in locations to discover further bottles.
Collecting the bottles gained users multiple entries into the competition to win the grand prize of a second honeymoon/vacation and redirected you the facebook app, which kept a profile and progress of your hunt.
From the facebook app, there were incentives to share the game with your friends on all social platforms and email, earning further entries, bottle-rewards or instant prizes… all while sharing the love of Comfort Lavender.
The Comfort Find your Love with Lavender campaign proved a great success, and was shared around Unilever South Africa as a digital achievement.
The campaign grew our facebook page by almost 25000 followers, gathering over 10000 gameplay entries, a haul of new advocates and earning a double-digit market share growth – cementing Comfort as the number one fabric conditioner in the market.
The personal approach to engaging with our community was rewarded with Product of the Year 2014 in the annual Nielsen Consumer Survey, and Unilever declared Share Your love With Lavender their most successful digital-first campaign to date… not too bad for a product associated with a mundane household chore!
But most of all, the love was very much appreciated and shared by our mums who had a new destination to share with each other.
Agency: The Niche Guys
Digital Lead: Rory Jacobs
Creative Director: Cameron Krieger
Account Manager: Leigh Augustus
Analytics: Sabelo Khanyile
Digital Strategy: Mick Valentine / Dustin Silk
Developers: Dustin Silk / Mick Valentine
Social Content: Mick Valentine