JD Williams faces a top-of-mind awareness of only 3%. To grow the business, we needed to embark on an ambitious ATL campaign to captivate new customers. Despite being outspent by our competition, our aim was to craft a smart and efficient investment strategy that would make a significant impact. Our goal was to differentiate ourselves from the noise in the category and champion our audience who often experience societal pressure to look and maintain youthfulness.
Our target audience, primarily women aged 45 and above, embodies both confidence and spending power. Yet, despite their timeless style, they often felt neglected by the media, constantly subjected to the pressure of defying age, and even let down by the clothing industry itself as women 45+ are considerably less likely to see clothes shopping as ‘fun’ (49% vs. 57% of all women – Mintel, 2023).
To deliver the required turnaround, we knew we had to act with scale and leave a profound impact. Our goal was to show the 8.5 million UK women aged 45-65 that JD Williams is a brand that supports them loudly and proudly, empowering them to feel good about themselves and showcasing their impeccable style to the world.
What we did
A media partnership was the perfect solution, transcending traditional media buying and giving midlife women an empowering voice, whilst also gaining an advantage over competitors before category investment skyrocketed during the spring/summer period. ITV and Heart Radio were the perfect choice. Each platform boasts exceptional content matched with influential female voices in the form of powerhouses (and JD Williams ambassadors) Davina McCall and Amanda Holden. Together they would help us in our mission to make the invisible unmissable.
Bringing together the grand scale of ITV, Heart, and our beloved ambassadors, we introduced seasonal ‘Style Stories’. These captivating narratives revolved around pivotal lifestyle moments, such as refreshing the spring wardrobe and hosting gatherings at home. Real women took centre stage alongside Amanda and Davina, demonstrating the transformative power of style for women over 45.
We launched with a 60-second TV commercial (TVC) across ITV and ITVX, debuting during Ant and Dec’s Saturday Night Takeaway. The TVC showcased the product range, with Davina and Amanda sharing their personal style stories based on the products. Throughout March, we followed up with 60-second and 30-second spots, refreshing the creative in April to showcase additional products.
To maximise reach and impact across touchpoints relevant to our audience, we harnessed the power of Heart’s radio and digital platforms. We intrigued listeners with ‘app-to-view’ trails on Heart Radio, featuring authentic stories from relatable women, strategically targeting weekends for optimal reach. Live presenter reads and co-branded content with Amanda Holden bolstered our brand’s credibility, while radio and social media competitions provided an intimate glimpse into style stories, rewarding and celebrating our audience throughout the campaign.
To provide consumers with comprehensive information and seamlessly guide them from the partnership to the JD Williams website, we utilized native articles and dedicated content pages, ultimately driving bottom-line results. Finally, to add another layer of collaboration, we integrated the competition into ITV through bespoke 60-second and 30-second TVCs, creating a multifaceted and synergistic activation.
Throughout the campaign, we ensured our audience experienced the utmost commitment and authenticity. By broadcasting their stories in high trust environments, we nurtured an engaging and genuine conversation. Thanks to our cross-partner approach, women not only witnessed and heard relatable style stories, but also felt empowered to embrace their own unique journeys.
The campaign achieved impressive results, strengthening brand awareness and perception among our target audience. Consideration surged by an average of 10% across both bursts (or 5ppts/9ppts respectively).
Most significantly, we succeeded in establishing JD Williams as a trusted brand among women aged 45-65. Among those exposed, an astounding 77% now regard JD Williams as a brand they trust (compared to 68% previously), and an impressive 74% would recommend the brand (compared to 62% pre-campaign).
Our efforts translated into tangible action, with nearly half of viewers (47%) confirming that they visited or planned to visit the JD Williams site as a direct result of the campaign. Notably, among visitors to the JD Williams campaign page, a staggering 58% were first-time visitors, highlighting the partnership’s ability to generate new demand for the brand.
Finally, our creative messaging excelled in forging a profound connection with our audience. The assets achieved an ‘Exceptional’ for System 1’s Spike score, based on the strength of branding and the intensity of emotional response. Meanwhile, the Heart messaging struck a powerful chord, driving competition entries that surpassed forecasts by an impressive 28%.