soak.com becomes a top destination for bathrooms

Key Points                     

  • soak.com wanted to move forward after rebranding
  • They moved into brand response ads with performance-based planning
  • As a result, they saw significant business growth year on year, well above the industry average

The Challenge

soak.com started out life as Bath Empire selling bathrooms online. Traditionally, marketing of bathrooms is price focussed to drive deals around Bank Holidays and the New Year and there is little differentiation between competing brands. Bath Empire was up against some high-spending retailers and struggled to cut through with their direct response campaign.

To tackle this challenge, in 2016, they rebranded as soak.com and started to build the brand name in the market. Their key objectives going forward were to modernise the brand, gain trust in the online world and exceed the average year on year market growth of c.11%. They wanted to be high up on customers’ consideration list, rather than a choice based on whatever deal they had on. They needed to differentiate the brand, connect with their target audience and inspire people at the start of their bathroom buying journey.

The Solution

In 2017, soak.com worked with their agency The Specialist Works (TSW) to create a more family friendly feel to the brand. TSW felt that TV was the best medium to empower soak.com to gain trust and favourability with their target audience. The campaign they created was called ‘Precious Family Moments’ targeting women aged 25 to 54 with a more humanised approach. The ad featured Tully, the baby elephant and the focus was more on brand response rather than direct response. The variety of ads showed that soak.com had a bathroom for everybody.

The audience loved Tully and enjoyed the new ads so response rates started to increase, particularly during morning television. Analysis by TSW showed that every time they ran a spot in Good Morning Britain there was a massive spike in traffic and so TSW recommended sponsoring a segment of the show.

The Plan

TSW used an iterative, evidence-based approach to TV planning. They used their planning model ‘The Performance Perspective’ to help soak.com find the perfect blend of channels which would drive the strongest outcomes within the budget. They used constant tracking to see which spots were performing best. They did this by looking at minute by minute traffic to the site, so they could assess the immediate response of each spot as it went out.

They segmented their audience into three groups: first-time renovators, growing families and empty nesters. They analysed the viewing preferences and behaviours of the three segments and built three plans with a view to target them discretely.

They did an analysis of attributed performance by channel, programme, day of week, daypart and creative and looked at trends in response based on attributed CPL as well as competitor activity.

In 2017, they doubled the number of ratings bought in 2016. This enabled them to run the campaign for longer, which meant they were able to keep soak.com top of mind through the long buying consideration period in this category and provided more time for live optimisation. 

To support the spot activity, soak.com sponsored the local weather on Good Morning Britain. This provided them with a daily communication with their target audience at the most responsive time.

Results

  • Brand awareness increased from 5.3% in 2016 to 15.3% in early 2018
  • Brand tracking conducted by itv showed that their key brand metrics had shifted considerably when comparing the pre and post wave. For example:
  • soak.com is a modern brand - up 45%
  • soak.com is a brand I’d consider buying from - up 27%
  • soak.com is knowledgeable about bathrooms - up 21%
  • Outperformed industry year on year business growth significantly (against 10% average)
  • 15% improvement in response rates month on month
  • 46% reduction in CPL
  • Shortlisted in TV Planning Awards for Best Ongoing Use of TV

Given our understanding and close working relationship with TSW, paired with our learnings and agility, we had a genuine gut feeling our segmented / multi variant creative of the connected world campaign would achieve our objective and deliver the results. It did.

This has now allowed us to move forward with future planned campaigns with the same approach and segmented tactics

Helen Gemmell Chief Marketing Officer, soak.com

Databank:

Sector: Online retail

Brand: soak.com

Campaign objectives: To reposition and differentiate the brand

Target Audience: Women 25-54

Budget: Approx. £2m (source: Nielsen)

Campaign Dates: The campaign ran throughout 2017

TV Usage:  30 second spots

Creative Agency: Creative soak.com

Production: ABF Pictures

Media Agency:  The Specialist Works

 

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