Volvo recently commissioned a series of films called ‘Human Made Stories’ in partnership with Sky Atlantic and Grey London. They appeal to a younger, aspirational millennial audience and demonstrate the brand’s ability to ‘make life less complicated, safer and enjoyable’. The films are stunningly beautiful to view, each sharing an inspiring tale of a young pioneer but their main aim is to realign the brand identity.

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Traditionally Volvo’s audience in the UK has been an older demographic, drawn to the brand’s core values of stability, safety and reliability. As a young male car nut, I’ve never really considered Volvo a fun, engaging brand – but this campaign has made me stand up and take note.

Volvo hasn’t changed its brand values, but the brand identity is now presented in a different way to a fresh audience. For example, Volvo in the past phrased reliability as a mum getting the kids home safely during a storm. But now reliability is about knowing, at the drop of a hat, that you can go off and explore and achieve.

The campaign is multi-platform. Its home is on-demand on Sky Atlantic as a short doc series and more films are to come. It also lives on Volvo’s social accounts and sponsors shows on Sky – watch the campaign develop by searching #HumanMade.

#HumanMadeVolvo & Sky Atlantic present Human Made Stories – Chapter 2 – Maria and Josefin

Posted by Volvo Car UK on Saturday, 10 September 2016

One of our clients, Kelly’s of Cornwall, recently went through a similar realignment, aiming to reach a new audience. Undergoing a packaging rebrand, Kelly’s also worked with Isobel to create a new ad. Wild West were tasked with using this concept to create new content and stories to inspire and engage a younger audience who want to eat ice cream anytime/anywhere.

Without moving away from its core values of sharing, quality and nostalgia, our recent #SpeakCornish campaign targeted this younger audience with a PR campaign and fresh social media strategy.

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Our PR and social media programme hinged on generating stories and content that reached a  younger demographic with tailored messaging. We were careful not isolate Kelly’s brand loyalists however, who are predominately parents and grandparents.  For example, on social we outreached with recipes for families, quote based photo posts (which appeal to teens), and ‘wish you were here’ GIFS for those who love Cornwall. We created buzz and excited via both social media and traditional platforms, with our ‘Ice Cream Protector, Seagull Deflector’ stunt and our lookalikes Westminster event both creating a stir.

#CoverYourCone – we’ve made the first ever ‘Ice Cream Protector’ to tackle the problem of ice cream theft by greedy…

Posted by Kelly’s of Cornwall on Monday, 15 August 2016

EDITORIAL USE ONLY Professional Duke and Duchess of Cornwall look-a-likes Jane Mosse and Guy Ingle visit Parliament, in London’s Westminster, with Kelly’s of Cornwall to rally support for the Cornish language following the recent Government funding cuts. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Thursday May 19, 2016. Kelly’s of Cornwall is encouraging people to sign a petition, which now has over 6000 signatures, to reinstate the funding that supports the teaching of Cornish. The first ever TV advert in Cornish, will go live on Monday 23rd May. Photo credit should read: David Parry/PA Wire

If you’re thinking about reaching a new audience, here are our 3 top tips… 

  • Research your target audience

Think carefully about what inspires and excites your target audience. What media do they consume? Who are their thought leaders/key influencers? What are the important touch points for this group? Research, research, research – and then start creating and tailoring your content to form your brand identity for that audience.

  • Placement – get in front of the right audience

Make sure you’re making the most of your budget by getting the most cost effective location for your campaign. For example, if you are running a targeted ad campaign on Facebook promoting an 18+ action movie in cinemas, don’t advertise to Facebook users between 13-16 because they can’t attend.

  • Stay true to your values, like Volvo and Kelly’s of Cornwall

Most brands have spent years developing a brand tone, often derived from their history and heritage. Only a very brave brand would tear up these core values and start again, but what is key is that you assess your values through the eyes of your new target audience, drawing out the all important value truths that will be needed to engage this new group. Pivot, but don’t polarise your messaging and risk ostracising your loyalists.


Words: Sam Shrimpton

Senior Campaign Executive at Wild West Comms