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Challenge

British parenting retailer, Mothercare, has always led the field, but recently, they’ve struggled to maintain relevance. Mothercare needed to transform by reconnecting with values that were historically at the core of their brand - empathy for parents. This transformation centred around:

1) Shifting focus from baby to parents. With all the focus on the baby, parents’ needs are neglected - we forget a new baby means a new parent. If Mothercare can help parents during their first tentative steps into parenthood then those parents will be better placed to look after their little ones.

2) Better representation of the spectrum of parents. Having a child unites all but parental representation in advertising has been very narrow to date - stylised, idealised, whitewashed and airbrushed. Mothercare want to better reflect the spectrum of parenting experiences.

Solution

Our research found 80% of mothers compare their bodies to unrealistic ideals, and yet we never see an honest portrayal in the media. This gap between representation and reality creates unhealthy comparisons and is a major contributor to postnatal depression.

#BodyProudMums took the bold step of smashing advertising and social media conventions of only showing perfect "snapback" bodies. Instead, the reality of the postpartum body, in all of its different glorious manifestations, is on display, normalising each individual’s experience and celebrating how incredible their bodies truly are.

This point is hammered home with the simple headline Beautiful, isn’t she., directly challenging the viewer to reconsider their preconceptions of beauty, and how women are represented. This would spark positive and necessary conversation about the postpartum body and the representation of women, and reassure mothers they’re not alone, helping them feel confident in their own, miraculous bodies. 

Result

Reach
50x the reach we paid for. 787 million total impressions, of which only 15.5 million were paid. Cost per potential reach = £0.0002. Facebook brand uplift survey showed +12.44pts in brand awareness (average 7.44pts) - Facebook said they’d never seen results like this.

Brand
People loved it. Extensively engaging with the campaign which led to an uplift in brand metrics: 19% uplift in "Mothercare is a brand that cares for parents,” 20% uplift in "Mothercare understands parenting issues” and 18% uplift in "Mothercare is a brand I love.”

Business
+2.8% market share increase from the period immediately before the campaign

Most importantly
Our mothers responded to the campaign: “I needed to see this today,” “it makes me feel human again” and “this campaign helps me realise I am not alone.”


mcgarrybowen

mcgarrybowen, founded in 2002, has grown to become one of the most successful agency start-ups ever. The agency is now a global, full-service, integrated marketing communications agency network with 12 offices around the globe.

Famous for Big Organizing Ideas and results-driven creative campaigns, mcgarrybowen counts some of the world’s most iconic companies as its clients, including American Express, Intel, Disney, United Airlines, Subway, The Clorox Company, The Kraft Heinz Company, Mondelēz International, Marriott, Chevron, Northrop Grumman, Hallmark, and Crayola.

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