Fresh & Easy Gets Provocative

The Objective: Sometimes it’s important for a brand to have a sense of humor, which is why the no-frills Fresh & Easy Neighborhood Market Inc. chain of grocery stores, owned by UK behemoth Tesco, tapped creative agency partner Ignited to launch its “f&easy” campaign, the goal of which is to personalize the brand and present it as an unfussy, laid-back company. In the words of Ignited President Eric Johnson, “f&easy” is meant to be “a fun and own-able rallying cry that captures the joy shoppers feel when they realize they can have it all.”

The Channel: Fresh & Easy’s fully integrated marketing effort includes mobile, online promotions, out-of-home, radio, and TV, as well as branding initiatives and in-store point-of-sale.

The Creative: The campaign kicked off with a music video/jingle, “F&easy, The Musical,” cowritten by Tony Award–winning composer Jeff Marx (Avenue Q )and performed by teen music phenom Julian Hornik on ukulele.

The Results: In the first seven weeks of the ongoing campaign, which hit in mid-April, the number of fans, followers, and subscribers across all of the brand’s social media channels increased by 21%. Fresh & Easy also saw nearly 40,000 paid search clicks, 16.8 million display and mobile impressions, and roughly 95,500 YouTube views.

The Scoop: Even with the uptick in campaign interest, in April Tesco announced its plans to pull Fresh & Easy out of the U.S. market after the brand failed to become profitable.

The Customer View: Fans seemed to enjoy the campaign’s tone. One YouTube viewer left this comment: “We’ve called it F’in E for years. Great to see you embracing the hilarious name you’ve always had.”

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