Summary

BWP has been working alongside STIHL, one of the world’s largest manufacturers of garden power tools, for over five years, providing an integrated approach to growing the brand and its bottom line, through powerful creative and strategic planning.

Growing brand awareness and affinity

Whilst STIHL is a highly successful global organisation, brand awareness in the UK was still extremely low amongst the largest potential growth market – domestic consumers. Traditionally manufactured for the professional user, STIHL was, and is, one of the go-to brands for tree surgeons, arborists, landscapers and the like. However, one of the brand’s main selling points is also one of their biggest barriers to purchase – their products are sold solely through a nationwide network of specialist expert dealers, and not through the larger retail DIY multiples that consumers naturally default to.

Whilst customers can expect exceptional service and knowledge from this distribution channel, BWP’s challenge has been to reposition STIHL and its sister brand VIKING (lawn mowers), as genuine options for both professionals AND consumers, as well as changing buyer behaviours to seek out and visit this non-traditional retail environment. At the same time, we had to continue to cater for the professional audience, ensuring that specific campaigns reinforced their choice of sticking with the best in the business.

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Insight-driven strategy through data profiling & research

By analysing and profiling existing customer sales data, BWP was able to provide key insights to STIHL about who was actually buying its products and more importantly, where more of the same type of people could be found and reached. These insights allowed significant leaps forward in the strategic planning process, informing recommendations on high-indexing media and geo-targeted activity, both on and offline.

Similarly, focus groups were conducted to benchmark current brand awareness levels and brand perceptions. This robust, upfront approach not only ensured the best potential ROI, but also the confidence that decisions were being based on a scientific approach and not assumptions.

Delivering market-leading creative

Take a look around the garden tool industry and you may notice that creatively there is little differentiation between how brands communicate and compete for share of voice. Generally speaking, the formula follows:

Garden/lawn + tool (front and centre) + uninspirational headline and body copy.

A similar approach applies to the broader content strategy and this is why BWP has continued to produce campaigns and assets that genuinely stand STIHL out from the crowd and touch the audience on an emotional level, whilst still conveying a product message. We want people to engage with, and be intrigued to find out more about, a brand that they may not have heard of before, or realised is actually relevant for them.

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The ultimate ice-breaker

As part of the recent multi-channel campaign, BWP produced STIHL GB’s first ever TV advert. One of five genuine STIHL users featured as the hero, Anne Marie Taberdo, a professional female Ice Carver.  Anne Marie starred in a stunning bio piece that demonstrated the quality, durability and reliability of STIHL’s products in challenging conditions.

Not only did this support a key seasonal promotion, but broadened the awareness of the brand in a way that stirred emotion and went beyond simply pushing a sales message. Justifying the bold approach to ‘do different’, we received unprompted feedback from consumers who felt compelled to get in touch, having identified wholeheartedly with the messaging and connected with the way that we broke down gender stereotypes of who could wield STIHL’s powerful equipment.

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