CALM: L’eau de Chris

5 January 2018

In October 2017 we pulled off one of the biggest stunts of 2017 when we launched L’eau de Chris, a premium bottled water infused with the tears of Love Island star Chris Hughes

Absurd, right? The media certainly thought so and were suckered in by the story, but not everything was as it seemed. This was the teaser for a campaign with mental health charity CALM and TOPMAN to raise awareness of the shocking statistic that suicide is the number-one killer off young men in the UK.

We wanted young men to understand a simple message, that it is ludicrous to bottle up emotions and it can lead to terrible actions. And the idea of bottling up became the inspiration for the big idea: one that played on Chris’s status from Love Island where he opened up about his own troubles, but one that also subverted the sometimes shallow and bizarre world of celebrity culture and merchandise (Hii, Kendall Jenner).

The product was teased on Instagram with a spoof ad campaign and video W to a bemused, mocking media and public over several days. On World Mental Health Day the press was invited to a launch event where Chris announced – via Facebook Live – the real reason behind the spoof product. It was not L’Eau de Chris, but Ludicrous. Ludicrous that suicide is the biggest killer of young men in the UK, that men should not feel the need to bottle up their emotions and the call to action #DontBottleItUp.

The disruptive tease and reveal campaign exceeded all expectations, taking young male mental health into front end of with over 110 pieces of coverage in national news, supplements, celebrity lifestyle titles and broadcast such as The SunDaily MailShortlistGlamour, OK!, This Morning and Sky News. During the five days of activity the campaign generated 120 million social impressions.

Most importantly it dominated share of voice on World Mental Health Day with a 495% increase in visit to the CALM website in first 48 hours of the campaign, with 95% first-time visitors