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Axe Visual Radio

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Seduction would remain in the game but Axe had changed its message to “Find your magic”. This transition was reflected in the ad campaign and the renewal of the packaging. 

For years, it had been working on the idea of the new pack and finally all this R&D time paid off: it was before a sophisticated, more sober pack, with cleaner and modern design. It also took the cap off: now you only needed to unlock the pack and press to receive the fragrance or antiperspirant. 

Now the challenge was to reach millennials young (18-24) and old (25-35). Why? Because the target is the most exposed to advertising and the one that is less likely to tolerate it. They are fed up with brands they don’t care about, they block them or skip them without guilt. That's why for this launch, Initiative had to surprise them and catch their attention in order to make them see the New Pack Axe.  

The agency synced the new vision of masculinity, with the insights it had about its target and their particular way of consuming media.  


There were two aspects of millennials that were essential for the strategy. Millennials are the kings of "Commuting" and they unlock their smartphones about 110 times per day. For Initiative, “Commuting" means being in constant movement, going from one place to another. This gave the agency a hint about the importance of the touch point in its strategy: it needed OOH and radio.  

The OOH was essential because the objective of the campaign was to show everyone the new pack.  

The radio was also a suitable media because of the high affinity with this target, it is their mate during their Commuting moments. In addition, the radio enabled it to reach many people, offered more coverage and gave the opportunity to play with frequencies throughout the campaign at a very competitive cost. 

Now the challenge was to make a radio spot that allowed Initiative to show something as visual as a new pack. It seemed impossible, until it hacked it.  

The agency realised that every time they listen the radio, they have their smartphone nearby.  

That's when it decided to innovate and bring radio media to the next level of the hand with an app that they have all already installed in their smartphones: Shazam. 

So it created the first radio spot where you could see and interact with product. 

By using available technology and through mobile, it turned a traditional media into a new one, in an impressive and memorable way to show a product. 


Initiative created a radio spot of 20”. But it had to create a teaser radio of 5” to let the target know they could Shazam the next radio spot to discover the new Axe pack. Then it let them hear a spot of another brand, so they had time to look for their smartphone, open the App and then Axe played its Shazam Radio Spot.  

How did it work?  

The agency put an inaudible trace into the spot so it could be Shazamed, the Shazam technology redirected the user to a 360 video where it showed them the new Axe pack like it was revealing a luxury car. 

Once this happened, the new Axe pack appeared all over the evasive millennials screens. 

In addition, they could participate to win a special kit with a leather backpack. The new Axe not only informed about the new pack, but also motivated the target to keep moving around the city.  


This campaign redefined the way radio is used. 

The spot performed 4X times better than the Shazam TV Benchmark. The radio spot brought more TAGS than many Shazam TV Campaigns and check this out… Radio TAGS cost 97% less than TV TAGS! (Tag means every time someone uses Shazam with the spots). 

The users spent in average 3:18 minutes watching the 360 video. The New Axe pack’s took up the whole screen of their smartphonesIt added thousands of views to the campaign.  

Among all the visits, 17% of them completed the form to win incredible prices a great performance compared to other formats.  

It had achieved the goal: thousands of millennials watched the new pack, through innovation on radio and the use of mobile.

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Brand Owner:
June - July 2015
Media Channel:
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