The best branding campaigns of 2015

Posted on 14th January 2016

A strong brand is one of the most important assets a company can own. Whatever your size and whatever your industry, how your buyers perceive your organisation, the products you sell or the services you offer, is all down to branding, or lack of it.

So who got it right during the last 12 months? We thought we’d take a look back and give you Unwritten’s verdict on the best branding campaigns of last year…

This Girl Can – Sport England

This Girl Can 2015 Campaign
Another example from the ‘This Girl Can’ campaign

Branding campaigns should always start with the needs and desires of your buyer and not with the brand or business. Sport England’s This Girl Can campaign did this brilliantly, focusing on strong, motivated real women and girls to show that sport is just as much for the female population as it is for the men. It told the real stories of real women who exercise and play sport, whether professionally or just for fun.

Ikea, The Power of a BookBook

While it may seem old school in this digital era, to send a catalogue out to existing and potential customers, printed literature it is still very effective for a lot of buyers. Ikea took at tongue-in-cheek look at its own strategy by calling its catalogue the BookBook and making a video about it. At Unwritten Creative we design a vast quantities of product leaflets each year for major retailers around the UK that effectively act as mini catalogues. Although we also develop a strong online version, it’s our leaflets that generate millions of pounds worth of revenue each week. Print lives on!

Heinz, Get Well Soup

Heinz get well soon Campaign
Heinz ‘Get Well Soon’ campaign

If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it is definitely Heinz’s philosophy when it comes to its regular winter campaign. This is another great example of not focusing on the business, the product or the services, but of concentrating on your buyers. Heinz teamed up with the Starlight Children’s Charity to raise money for seriously and terminally-ill children by creating special tins with get well messages on them. Recognising that when people are poorly they generally want a warming bowl of soup, the multi-national has brought its message back for the fifth year running. 

“It Happens Here” – Ogilvy & Mather for 28 Too Many/FGM

There are times when a campaign needs to deal unflinchingly with tough subject matters and Ogilvy & Mather’s It Happens Here is just such a campaign. It uses national flags, sewn together, to make the hard-hitting point that female genital mutilation happens all over the globe and is not just a problem in the third world.

Grey London for The Sunday Times

Sunday Times Rich List 2015
The Sunday Times 2015 Rich List campaign

The Sunday Times tapped into our national obsession with celebrity culture when they launched a project to encourage readers to pick up their copy of the Sunday Times rich list. Graphics featured yo-yos emblazoned with celebrity faces, including Victoria Beckham, Sir Elton John and Sir Mick Jagger to galvanise interest about how famous designers, singers and entrepreneurs have risen or dropped in the ratings.

Impact Echo for Honda

Any project which nods to the Mr Men books has to be good. Honda’s campaign features people from around the world giving directions with elongated arms that wouldn’t look out of place on Mr Tickle. The task was to let car buyers know about a new navigation system which would cut out any need to stop to ask for confusing directions.

Newcastle Gateshead Initiative / Visit England

New York to Newcastle NGI Campaign
New York to Newcastle, the ‘New’ campaign.

Of course, a run-down of the best branding campaigns of 2015 wouldn’t be complete without one of our own. Earlier this year, Unwritten created the above ‘New’ campaign to promote the launch of the United Airlines direct flight from New York to Newcastle. This campaign was the first part of the Northern Tourism Growth Fund, a £10m government-funded international tourism programme managed by Visit England. 

We set to work developing concept, campaign name, branding and marketing collateral that encouraged US travellers to visit the North of England via Newcastle International Airport. Our campaign concentrated on the history, heritage and world-renowned friendliness of the region and supported a media partnership with Lonely Planet and media visit programme to raise awareness of the North of England.

We hope you’ve enjoyed browsing through our favourites. If there are other campaigns you feel really stood out last year we’d love to hear about them.

Or, for more information on developing a marketing campaign with Unwritten, a campaign that stands out from the crowd and offers a real return on your marketing budget invested, please call Amy or Lisa 0191 300 8550 or email