THE VISION FOR FASHION RE-TOLD™ WAS CONCEIVED BY THE MANAGING DIRECTOR OF HARRODS, MICHAEL WARD, WHO WANTED TO CREATE THE NSPCC’S FIRST EVER STANDALONE FASHION STORE, AIMING TO RAISE FUNDS TO GIVE EVERY CHILD IN LONDON A VOICE.
CATEGORY: BEST SPONSORSHIP ACTIVATION
EVENT: FASHION RE-TOLD™
Since 2015 the NSPCC has retained a partnership with Harrods, the world’s most famous department store, initially formed through the personal connections of some of our most influential and dedicated supporters.
The store aimed to raise £70,000 to support NSPCC services in and around the UK’s capital, including the Speak Out. Stay Safe. programme which teaches children how to stay safe from abuse in an age appropriate way via assemblies and workshops.
The team aimed to engage with high-level key stakeholders to raise awareness of child abuse in local London boroughs and to generate positive PR that benefits Harrods and the NSPCC.
The Fashion Re-told™ store aimed to emulate the luxurious shopping experience which Harrods’ Knightsbridge store is renowned for.
Due to the availability of the complimentary store space given by Cadogan, the team had an extremely tight turnaround time of just six weeks in which to deliver every aspect of the store.
One of the biggest challenges faced by the team was having enough full-time staff to run the shop. It was a unique volunteering opportunity for internal staff at the NSPCC and Harrods and whilst there was lots of interest, there needed to be a real drive from the team to recruit and train volunteers from across the organisation to be involved, to ensure the store could be staffed 7 days a week for 1 month.
The objectives were delivered through a combination of high profile events to celebrate the pop-up, a robust social media plan to deliver engaging content for all parties, and ongoing press office support to both launch the project and drive ongoing coverage throughout the month in local and national UK titles.
Fashion Re-told™ was open 7 days a week, including bank holidays, from 13th April to 13th May and having the balance of fashion experts and NSPCC fundraisers meant customers received a luxurious and knowledgeable experience.
Harrods made use of its extensive range of suppliers and brand relationships to ensure the store was a success. Harrods’ Managing Director personally made an introduction to Cadogan Estates, who were able to donate a prime retail location on Sloane Street for the store for a six-week period covering all rent and utilities. This was the first time that London institutions Harrods and Cadogan have come together in support of a local cause.
The Harrods visual merchandising team took full responsibility for developing and delivering a design concept for the store. They created a high-end boutique which fit perfectly with the surrounding retailers, whilst appealing to the social media savvy with an eye-catching and ‘instagrammable’, millennial-pink colour scheme. The passion for the NSPCC’s work from Harrods staff ensured the store was taken from its bare shell to opening day in just five days.
Other Harrods teams donated not only their time, but valuable business acumen and resource across all areas of the project. As well creating a store from scratch, the Harrods marketing, communications and creative teams worked together with the NSPCC to produce creative assets, branding, advertising, and a comprehensive communications campaign. Both organisations’ maintenance, IT, and legal teams supported in all aspects of set up and the running of the store.
The project received widespread media coverage, acting as a great vehicle for the NSPCC to gain exposure in sectors of the press where it previously didn’t have a voice such as Vogue, Tatler, and Vanity Fair.
Media coverage landed key messaging on the NSPCC and its charitable objectives. In total, over 60 pieces of media coverage were generated, highlighting the work NSPCC do with Harrods and the energy and effort they put behind their cause. They were able to secure a slot on London Live as well as advertising space on every bus stop along Sloane Street and Brompton Road. Harrods utilised its 1.4m following on Instagram to promote the shop and share its successes.
Other key stats include 1159 paying customers; 2403 individual pieces sold; most expensive piece sold – £1000 and most money spent in one transaction – £1510
Fashion Re-told™ not only achieved its aims and KPIs but surpassed them. The store raised a total of £110,555; £40,000 over its target. 100% of the funds raised were kept by the NSPCC, as Harrods and Cadogan covered all costs related to the running of the store; this gave the NSPCC an entirely new and unexpected platform to reach a wider range of engaged and influential stakeholders.
The store was staffed by a combination of NSPCC employees and 166 Harrods staff, who volunteered and collectively donated 1,400 hours of their time; a record-breaking volunteering project at the NSPCC.
The project was repeated again in 2019, raising over £165,000.
The winner clearly identified its objectives and set ambitious and considered goals to raise awareness and drive engagement across live and social channels. Leveraging a strong brand partnership demonstrates innovative thinking; the concept of a pop-up experience has allowed each brand to articulate a common purpose that absolutely made sense and, having far exceeded their goals, has ultimately led to a hugely successful partnership campaign.