The Good, The Bad and The Viral

The team have started 2019 with a creative bang (who said January blues?!) and scoured the world of PR for some inspiring and insightful PR campaigns. From a hard-hitting domestic violence campaign to gravy scented candles and gender-revealing pasta dishes, this month has it all.

So grab a cup of something warm and enjoy the team’s top picks for this month’s Good, Bad and Viral PR campaigns.

Domestic Violence Reversable Poems

Domestic violence charity Refuge launched a hard-hitting Christmas campaign aimed at turning attitudes of domestic violence on their head. Working in partnership with McCann Bristol, the charity ran a series of reversible poems, which, if read normally conjured images of a traditional family Christmas. But when read in from bottom to top the lines revealed the horrors of a household living with domestic violence.

The poetry campaign was promoted across Twitter and on the charity’s website, as part of a global initiative called 16 days of action (25 November – 10 December) to raise awareness of violence against women and girls.  It is part of Refuge’s ongoing mission to help victims of abuse, as research shows two women a week are killed at the hands of a partner or ex-partner in England and Wales, and another three women commit suicide each week as a way of escape.

Sandra Horley, chief executive of Refuge, said: "Domestic abuse is the biggest issue affecting women and children in this country today – it really is a life and death issue. Yet still too few women know how to spot the signs of domestic violence, realise that domestic abuse is a crime or know that Refuge is here to support them.

"We want women to know that, no matter what time of year, no one should suffer in silence and they should ‘turn’ to us for support."

The hard-hitting poems were featured in multiple publications including The Sun, Refinery 29, The Pool, Cosmopolitan and The Independent.

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KFC Sold Gravy-scented Candles

What could cheer you up more on Blue Monday than a KFC gravy scented candle?

KFC cleverly launched a limited-edition gravy-scented candle to bring happiness to KFC fanatics on Blue Monday!

There were just 230 limited edition candles up for grabs, they were available on a first-come, first-served basis. They were also free! To accompany the delicious gravy scent, KFC unveiled a new KFChill experience which allows users to listen to sounds of their KFC Gravy Mega Box. Choosing between the sounds of frying chicken, falling fries or simmering gravy.

KFC have released a chicken scented candle and bath bomb in the USA before but this is the first time a KFC scented product has been released in the UK.

This campaign achieved coverage in national newspapers such as The Sun, The Evening Standard and The Mirror, and The Metro!


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The Gender-Reveal Lasagna

Is it gross or pure genius? The launch of the gender-reveal lasagna (yes, we know this is not how you spell lasagne – but it is how they’ve spelled it so we kind of have to too!) pretty much broke the internet this month!

US restaurant and catering service, Villa Italian Kitchen, announced that they were introducing a new dish that would reveal the sex of your unborn child – the perfect addiction for your next baby shower?

The Italian creation consists of a secret pink or blue interior, made from layers of cheese, Alfredo sauces and Italian pasta. It doesn’t come cheap though, the dish is priced at $140 and serves 12 people.

Journalists from around the world took to Twitter to discuss the bizarre PR pitch that had just landed in their inbox, with one announcing: “Possibly the best subject line in an email ever: "Gender Reveal Lasagna?! – Villa Italian Kitchen Invites Guests to Celebrate their Bundles of Joy with Boatloads of Cheese!". The noise of tweets resulted in the #LasagnaReveal trending on Twitter.

Despite many negative responses to the latest way to reveal the gender of your little bundle of joy, the stunt did exactly what it set out to do and had everybody talking about it. A cheap photoshoot and some food colouring, and your brand is being talked about across the world! Plus, we’re sure they have been inundated with requests for the sought-after dish, boosting sales.

The news was featured in many publications across the UK and US including Daily Mail, The Independent, The Mirror, Grazia Daily, BuzzFeed, MSN, Metro, I Heart radio.



Clear Channel Homeless Billboard

A company called Clear Channel Sweden has teamed up with the government to protect homeless people when the weather drops to freezing conditions in Stockholm.

The company helped homeless people find their nearest shelter through innovative technology; they swapped the boring ads on billboards with directions to the nearest homeless shelter which we love. Across Stockholm, 53 billboards were activated for the program and they focused on areas that were most commonly used for homeless people. We think this is a brilliant use of technology and makes us happy that it is helping homelessness in one country, even if it is just a little.

Clear Channel International said “thanks to technology, we can develop solutions that can help people and cities”. This campaign had a positive response and featured in multiple publications including The Drum.



Uber links up with Calm to offer wellbeing exercises whilst travelling

Mindfulness and meditation is definitely a buzzword at the moment and it’s something that we’ve got involved with in the Sunny Bird PR office, with many of the team trying out the Calm app for guided meditations, which is why we love this collaboration between Calm and Uber.

The two companies have teamed together to help bring some relaxation to our hectic lives with their meditation exercises for Uber passengers. The apps have released four exercises of varying durations designed to fill a taxi journey lasting 3 minutes, 5.5 minutes, 12 minutes and 30 minutes. The campaign is accompanied by a survey that shows that 54% of Uber riders use their time in a cab to scroll through emails, social media and the news on their smartphones. Uber are aiming to turn taxi rides on their head – turning them into opportunities to relax and unwind.


This great campaign achieved articles in The Independent, Gizmodo, Metro and London Evening Standard.





How to put The YOU in YouTube

In the last decade, YouTube has become one of the most influential social media channels and that’s thanks to the rise of bloggers, vloggers and influencers. With over a billion users, YouTube has become a platform for teenagers and young-adults to keep up-to-date with regular vlogs, a place for adults to re-watch clips from their favourite TV programmes and even a place for travellers to watch holiday reviews or restaurant reviews. But what about YouTube for business? How can you create a channel which reflects the key parts of your brand and puts you ahead of your competitors? We find out…

Brand Consistency

Your social media channels should be consistent with one another and this is key to your brand. This doesn’t necessarily mean that you should be sharing exactly the same content, but things like cover photos, logos and colour schemes should be seamless across your social pages. YouTube is a slightly different kettle of fish as you need to use other social media channels in order to share your videos. BUT the goal is not to rely on the other channels and make your YouTube channel the place to be!

Take a look at our own Youtube Page as an example.


No one will want to subscribe to your page if the content is dry and boring. Upload a variety of different videos that truly reflect the message of your brand. Post team videos, fun videos or videos that celebrate a certain national day such as National Coffee Day or National Dogs Day! Just like on Twitter and Facebook, you should be posting a combination of posts to keep your page fresh and exciting.

Here’s an example of a fun video we made for one of our clients

Schedule your Posts

Don’t just think that scheduled posts are for Twitter and Facebook. YouTube has a publishing feature which means you can schedule your videos to upload at a certain time. This explains how vloggers can be at a press launch but still upload their videos on time - is there anything these influencers can’t do?!

Utilise YouTube Live

People want to see what you are up to right now! Even if it’s an office video, it can still be exciting. Film your team and ask them what they are up to. It will keep your channel active.

Be the Expert

A professional channel is very different to a personal channel. Make your YouTube channel the platform for people to come to for expert knowledge. You can do this by posting review videos or team interview videos.

We’ve been working on an exciting new PR project and shared this on our YouTube channel.

Use the Tags!

Before publishing your post, you can add tags along the bottom of the publishing page in order for subscribers and non-subscribers to be able to see relatable content. Your videos will then become categorised and will be easier to search; if they’re easier to search then you’ll attract a more relevant audience who are more likely to subscribe.

Video Length

Too short and it will hardly be worth posting. Too long and your viewers will get bored. We recommend uploading a video between 1-2 minutes depending on whether your video is an interview or a news piece.

Our client’s new Garden Terrace launch is a perfect example.


Fill in the bio, the description and include a good cover photo. Blank spaces will only make your channel appear unprofessional.

Quality Videos

Always upload your videos in HD quality or whatever the best quality for your phone or camera is. We recommend using your smartphone to take videos for YouTube as it’s easier to use, a lot quicker and surprisingly good quality.

Check out Sunny Bird PR’s Re-brand as an example of a good quality video.