The APG Creative Strategy Awards Shortlist 2009: Axe (Japan)

Planned by: Frank Reitgassl, Suzie Hoban
Agency: Bartle Bogle Hegarty, Singapore
Brand: Axe
Campaign: Wake-up service


This is a wonderful example of a brand effortlessly moving into new media and giving a long-running brand idea fresh life.

The business problem? To get Japanese guys to spray more Axe. Analysis showed that Axe penetration couldn't realistically increase much more; the task was about increasing usage among those already converted to the brand. Because the challenge was to change behaviour rather than attitude, the team looked beyond traditional broadcast media.

An analysis of morning routines produced a simple fact that helped unlock the brief - 67 per cent of Japanese guys use their mobile phone as their alarm clock. This fact, combined with the well-established brand territory, produced the Axe wake-up service. Guys signed up to a mobile alarm application and every morning for three weeks, they received a video wake-up call from their chosen Axe Angel.

This paper impressively blurred the lines between planning, creative and marketing. Simple, rigorous planning analysis generated an unexpected and creative idea to help drive the business forward.