Marketing: Ariel campaign is tackling ‘first wash anxiety’

For the campaign, “Redefine clean”, Deacon designed the Eek! Collection, a range of garments specifically designed to look like new after being heavily stained and then washed with the pods.
The Procter & Gamble brand set up a pop-up shop selling the range in East London last November. Unbeknown to visitors, everything in the shop had been stained and washed.
A TV ad, created by Leo Burnett and launching today, features the reactions of shoppers as they are told about the backstory of the shop’s merchandise.
Stefan Feitoza, marketing director for northern Europe at the FMCG giant, told Campaign the idea was about “recognising the emotional connection people may have with the clothes they wear and how that impacts the way they take care of them.”

In an Ariel survey of 500 UK consumers last year, 79% said new clothes gave them a confidence boost, while 62% said they went clothes shopping specifically for the “just bought” feeling of a new item of clothing.
But 77% felt anxiety about the effect that the first wash would have on their newly bought clothes and 51% said that after a single wash, they no longer considered clothes to be “new”.
Feitoza added: “Ariel been always been at the forefront of technology, but for the consumer, what matters is the effect this science has on their clothes. As consumers have become more discerning and fashion conscious, their concerns over how their clothes will be affected by washing have grown.
“After we found that three-quarters of people in the UK have ‘first wash anxiety’, it was a natural fit to demonstrate this through partnering with an icon of the fashion industry, Giles Deacon, in creating this social experiment.
“By linking to an exclusive, high-fashion product, the science behind our product is made more accessible to our target audience.”
The campaign will run on Facebook, P&G-owned sites SuperSavvyMe.co.uk and Victoria.co.uk, and in partnerships with Closer, Heat and Grazia.
Deacon commented: “As a designer, I’ve always had a deep interest in the psychology of what makes clothes appealing to us, and Ariel’s campaign gets to the heart of our relationship with new clothes.
“I was excited to design a collection that could help reverse the common perception that once washed, clothes lose their appeal.”
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