Smashing Engineering Perceptions
13th November, 2020
Related News: Case Study
Rock stars have been smashing guitars for decades. Jimi Hendrix, The Who's Pete Townsend and The Clash's Paul Simonon — technically Simonon destroyed a bass, but potato potahto. But what if you could create a guitar that even the most notable rock star of all time couldn't destroy?
Turns out, you can.
Global engineering company, Sandvik, built the world’s first unsmashable guitar with the help of virtuoso, Yngwie Malmsteen. Founded in 1862, Sandvik is known worldwide for its metal cutting, mining and advanced materials expertise. However, the businesses worldwide persona had never been one of progression and invention — this needed to change.
To support the release of the world’s first unsmashable guitar and improve company perception, Sandvik appointed Stone Junction. Our task? To deliver world-class digital PR services and show the world Sandvik Group rocked — literally.
- Launch the Sandvik unbreakable guitar to the media by generating 52 clippings throughout April and May 2019. Clippings were to be generated across four vertical media sectors (general news, business and finance, technology and trade, entertainment and lifestyle) in 13 countries including the UK, USA, France, China and Sweden.
- Shift the perception of Sandvik to being seen as one of the most progressive industrial engineering companies in the world. This would be achieved by combining paid, earned, social and owned media tactics to drive positive engagement in regard to an original video series created for the campaign by the Sandvik group.
- Increase awareness of Sandvik's industrial and advanced materials expertise by showcasing the individuals involved in the project using interviews with the media within the first month post-launch
The idea, research and planning
We began by identifying and categorising media outlets first within the chosen 13 countries and then segmenting further into their vertical media outlets. This generated a database of publications that were both geographically and genre-specific.
Each sector was selected based on its prior relevance to previous company campaigns and the industries within which Sandvik wanted to establish themselves as experts; such as manufacturing, composites and trade. National media was targeted based upon its ability to achieve maximum coverage.
We included warm media outlets that had covered the first Let's Create Sandvik project so as to maintain previously built relationships with the media. We also enlisted the multilingual PR specialists in Stone Junction to support the international nature of the campaign.
Strategy, tactics, creativity and innovation
The project began with a pre-launch teaser airing on April 9th, 2019. Designed to create intrigue and interest within our chosen media sectors, the teaser showed musical virtuoso Yngwie Malmsteen playing and attempting to smash the guitar during a performance.
By issuing an embargoed teaser in the week prior to launch, we were able to generate interest in the campaign across both our vertical sectors and aforementioned countries.
The full documentary-style video — created by Swedish advertising experts, Forsman and Bodenfors — focused on the engineering and manufacturing of the piece and was exclusively shown post-launch. Now we had the media interested, the official video provided the media with both the context for the project and our revised public persona for Sandvik.
On the day of launch we then proactively contacted the relevant UK based media — print, broadcast and trade publications — to arrange a series of interviews with members of the Sandvik team. All media contacts were followed up by phone and offered exclusive content and interviews in order to maximise coverage.
At the launch, journalists were allowed to hold and play the guitar, just as Malmsteen had. This sparked a large uptake in interest surrounding the campaign and opened up opportunities for high domain coverage.
Finally, we organised a general press release that covered all target media areas. This meant we were able to distribute efficiently and with precision timing whilst still at the event.
The earned PR campaign followed a set schedule, due to the exclusive nature of the story and to match the paid and social aspects of the campaign:
- March: preparing relevant media lists using historical warm contacts
- w/c April 1
- Campaign introduction, including short teaser video.
- Following up with UK journalists to schedule launch day interviews
- April 9
- Official global campaign launch, with access to full media toolkit and feature-length video content.
- Series of journalist meetings across London, UK to demonstrate the guitar's capabilities and playability
- Follow up outreach with global media contacts offering exclusive content and interviews.
- w/c April 15
- Follow up with unresponsive media contacts to generate further coverage
- w/c April 29
- Launch of the charity auction to UK and USA media contacts
Measurement and Evaluation
Objective one: Media Coverage
- 172 clippings across 16 countries — including the USA, UK, Sweden, Austria, Germany and China — exceeding the coverage target by 231 per cent.
- 55 clippings across entertainment and lifestyle media which contributed to the Sandvik rebrand
- 59 clippings across technology and trade media
- 56 clippings across general news media, including eleven clippings in national media in six countries
- 162 print clippings with an average domain authority of 48
- Nine print clippings, to date, reaching 324 thousand people
- One clipping generated for every £98 spend on earned coverage
Objective two: Video Views
- 7,763,570 online video views
- 970,494 views of the teaser and the mini-documentary on YouTube
- 5,785,707 views of the campaign video content on Facebook
- 1,007,369 videos of all campaign video content on Twitter
Objective three: Media Interviews
- Five journalist interviews scheduled for campaign launch day
- The Times, The Sun, Eureka, Guitar World and Metal Talk with a total readership of 1,803,125
- Interview with Wyborcza Gazeta — Polish national newspaper with a circulation of 200,306
- YouTube Influencer, James McVey from British pop/rock band The Vamps.
- BBC Newsday
- National TV (ITA/JAP)
Want us to rock your digital PR services too? Then why not get in touch on +44(0)1785 225416 or email us on email@example.com.