CLUBCARD ACCEPTED: HOW WE GOT TIKTOK (AND THE UK) AUDITIONING TO BE THE VOICE OF TESCO VALUE
In September 2022, we launched Tesco – the UK’s biggest supermarket – on TikTok with a campaign to find the new (temporary) voice of the Tesco self-service checkout. Here’s how it took social media, the press, and the nation by storm – and demonstrably improved perceptions of Tesco Clubcard.
CAMPAIGN CONTEXT: CLUBCARD PRICES
One of Tesco’s core business pillars is “Fair Prices” – a commitment to “helping keep your bill at the till low with our price acts.” One key vehicle to deliver this is Tesco Clubcard Prices, which gives Tesco Clubcard holders access to exclusive deals.
THE BUSINESS OBJECTIVE: GROWING THE NUMBER OF CLUBCARD HOLDERS
Tesco Clubcard is one of the UK’s most established loyalty schemes, and it’s our job to help it keep that way. For September 2022, our overall Tesco Clubcard Prices workstream objectives included improving value perception scores, increasing Tesco Clubcard basket penetration, and increasing Tesco Clubcard app usage.
THE COMMS OBJECTIVE: CUTTING THROUGH ON TIKTOK
Since TikTok emerged on the social media scene, we saw it could drive engagement, hold user interest, and spread word of mouth in ways other platforms couldn’t. We knew TikTok was the perfect place to spread the Tesco Clubcard gospel to new and established audiences – but we needed to find a way to cut through.
OUR INSIGHT: ‘CLUBCARD ACCEPTED’ IS ALREADY THE SOUND OF TESCO VALUE ON TIKTOK
We started our research with a deep dive into the existing Tesco-on-TikTok conversation.
This revealed a lot of love for Tesco Clubcard: looking at the TikTok conversation around British supermarkets’ distinct brand assets, Tesco Clubcard was the third-most-popular topic with 28m video views – ahead were Big Tesco (51m views) and Percy Pig (167m views) (these figures are from July 2022, so before the campaign launched).
Many of the TikToks about Clubcard focused on the phrase “Clubcard accepted,” as said by the Tesco self-service checkout when users scan their Clubcard and the cost of their shop is instantly reduced.
Popular themes of the videos included fans sharing TikToks filming the “thrill at the till” moment when the price of a shop is reduced at the tap of the Clubcard, and even reciting the full “script” – effectively already auditioning to voice the checkout.
OUR IDEA: GIVE OUR FANS THE CHANCE TO BECOME THE VOICE OF THE TESCO VALUE
We knew from previous Tesco campaigns that our most impactful social executions work because they give the audience a chance to be part of them and help shape the outcome.
Given the Tesco-on-TikTok love for Clubcard (and clearing the logistics with Tesco), we decided to celebrate our fans by letting them audition to be The Voice of the Checkout – for a week, at least.
THE SOLUTION: LEVERAGE TIKTOK-NATIVE BEHAVIORS AND FUNCTIONALITIES, INCLUDING THE INHERENT ABSURDITY OF THE PLATFORM
To discover the next voice to say “Clubcard accepted” through TikTok, we leaned on what we know works on the platform.
In terms of look and feel, we used the ‘face / mouth’ AR effect – a popular TikTok trend embraced by creators as well as other brands – to turn one of the Tesco checkouts into a character in its own right. (And, as a special Easter egg, it was voiced by the current Voice of the Checkout.)
For the mechanic, we put out the call to audition as a TikTok duet. Duets are a unique TikTok feature that allow TikTok creators to interact with each other; using the functionality thus turned the campaign into a chance to co-create and for entrants to really become part of the creative.
Finally, the tone of voice was uniquely TikTok: the checkout’s (slightly) sarcastic script (with a few eyerolls for good measure) reflects the ironic self-awareness of the platform.
ULTIMATELY: SETTING OURSELVES UP FOR SUCCESS
With a strong creative strategy supported by platform-native insights around how people actually use TikTok – and a supporting plan for how to manage the Tesco brand on the platform – Voice of the Checkout had all the right ingredients to perform well – but would theoretical best practice and innovation would lead to real-world impact?
The success of Voice of the Checkout across fronts proved that building on platform-native brand conversations and behaviors can have unprecedented impacts.
WE CUT THROUGH ORGANICALLY
In the first 24h of launch (before paid support), #TescoVoiceOfCheckout achieved over 5m organic views.
WE GAINED EARNED MEDIA
The story was picked up by British regional publishers within hours of launch. By the end of the week, it was featured in national publishers including The Daily Mail and LadBible; and international ones including The Times Nigeria.
WE WERE RECOGNIZED BY THE ADVERTISING INDUSTRY
Voice of the Checkout made headlines in ad publications including Campaign and AdAge (as Editor's Pick). It won the 2022 UK TikTok Award for Best Creative and was featured as a top campaign of the year in the 2022 Most Contagious Report.
WE GOT TIKTOK TALKING ABOUT THE CAMPAIGN – AND ENGAGING WITH THE VIDEOS
Over the 10 days the call was live, campaign hashtag #TescoVoiceOfCheckout saw 42m video views on TikTok; and was 'Trending on TikTok' every day.
People wanted to be part of it: we received just under 3,000 entries, from the hilarious to the serious.
ALL THIS SHIFTED BRAND PERCEPTIONS
Brand lift results show the campaign drove a 12% shift in awareness and a 4% shift for likelihood to recommend Tesco Clubcard.
WE ESTABLISHED CLEAR LEARNINGS FOR CREATING MORE TALKABLE WORK
The success of the campaign gave us a strong framework for creating more culturally relevant work that gets people talking about, and engaging with, our brands.
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