CIL - Beauty on a Small Budget

Limited Resources (SILVER)

Client Credits: PPG Canada
Ashley Saltern
Daniela Pricoli
Alison Goldman

Agency Credits: DDB Canada
DDB Canada
Chief Creative Officer: Cosmo Campbell
Executive Creative Director: Paul Wallace
Creative Director: David Ross
Strategic Planning: Brandon Smith
Art Director: Liam Johnstone
Senior Copywriter: Frank Macera
Group Account Director: Amy Mateer
Account Supervisor: Kristine Lafreniere
Account Executive: Kate-Lynn Merkowsky
Managing Director: Martine Levy
Vice President: Keka DasGupta
Senior Consultant: Ruth Ann Dafoe
Consultant: Kaitlyn Levy
Senior Producer: Lorrie Zwer
Producer: Ella Gruber
PHD Montreal
Suneeva – Lewis (Director)
Suneeva – Stuart Campbell (DOP)
Rooster – Izzy Erhlich (editor)
Rooster – Craig Jay (asst editor)
Fort York – Ernie Mordak (online artist)
Fort York – Jason Pereira (online assistant)
Boombox Sound
The Vanity – color transfer
Colourist – Andrew Exworth

Total 1173 Words


Business Results Period (Consecutive Months):September 2015 – November 2015
Start of Advertising/Communication Effort: September 2015
Base Period as a Benchmark: September 2014 – November 2014
Geographic Area: Canada
Budget for this effort: $1 - $2 million

Why should this case win in the category (ies) you have entered?
On a modest budget relative to the competition, CIL Paint (CIL) managed to generate sales results way beyond what was demanded. More impressively, it was achieved during the low painting season. In addition, the specific SKU, CIL Premium, was only sold at The Home Depot, and had to contend with an exclusive Home Depot brand - BEHR, which is heavily promoted in-store.

a) Describe the Client’s business, competition and relevant history:

CIL Paints (CIL) operates in a highly competitive category. The market is cluttered and many brands competing for the attention of consumers. While CIL has always made strategic, insight-driven marketing decisions, their brand consideration is low within the category and market share has suffered. This is due to competitors with larger marketing budgets as well as a challenging sales situation in The Home Depot - the only store where CIL Premium is sold. BEHR (a brand sold exclusively at The Home Depot) provides higher margins, resulting in store associates promoting BEHR over CIL Premium, negatively impacting CIL Premium’s ability to generate sales.

b) Describe the Client’s Business Issues/Opportunities to be addressed by the campaign:

CIL couldn’t solely rely on price as a point of differentiation as it’s too easy for other brands to follow suit and slash prices. Even if consumers are intrigued by the price we still needed to get them motivated to paint and show them how easy the process can be. We needed to disarm their deep rooted concerns about painting – make it fun and approachable and show them it doesn’t take much effort or money to transform their space.

c) Resulting Business Objectives: Include how these will be measured:
o Increase sales of CIL Premium at The Home Depot by 9% during the duration of the campaign from October 13th – November 29th.
o Increase awareness of CIL Premium before they enter the retailer
o Re-enforce CIL’s overall brand positioning of ‘Beautifully Simple’
o Entice brand conversion from competitive brands
o Receive a total of 80 entries to the Beauty on a Small Budget contest
o Through social media, blogs & giveaways create awareness and exposure to the CIL brand and CIL Premium paint products by garnering 2.5 million impressions

a) What new learnings/insights did you uncover?

There is a perception that re-decorating is hard work and costly. We needed to showcase that a little paint can make a big difference – you can revitalize a space without breaking the bank or taking up too much time. In addition, if the CIL brand as a whole could provide assistance during the painting process, that would further raise affinity towards the CIL brand and lessen the chance of consumers purchasing the BEHR brand while in store at The Home Depot.

b) What was your Big Idea?

Beauty on a Small Budget. A playful campaign that not only shows how easy it is to transform a room with CIL Premium, but does it in a playful manner to disarm any concerns about the whole painting process.

c) How did your Communication strategy evolve?

An integrated program was designed to increase awareness of the CIL Premium product before consumers got to the store – because we know they are often convinced to buy BEHR when they get to the shop floor. Consumers will be less likely to be converted to another brand if a specific CIL product is top of mind. We also needed to get consumers re-think decorating as a task and make them feel confident that it’s easy and won’t break the bank.

  • The media had a three phase approach
    • Launch the video and maximize reach
    • Retargeting and social
    • Content and maximizing engagement

d) How did you anticipate the communication would achieve the Business Objectives?

The main target was females and males aged 25-54 with a slight skew to the female audience. They are not design savvy and as a result they have a tendency to put off painting projects. The Beauty on a Small Budget campaign shows how easy it is to transform a room with CIL Premium in a playful manner in order to make the painting process look easier, re-enforced with a pricing message.

Section IV — THE WORK
a) How, where and when did you execute it?

  • To leverage the ‘small’ in small budget, we created a real looking miniature room and gave it a makeover with just a little bit of paint and a few accent pieces. The entire makeover was done with mini paint rollers, brushes, some mini lamps and even small pillows sewn on a mini sewing machine - transforming a dull, drab room into a thing of beauty.
  • The campaign launched with two-15 second pre-roll spots and a 1-minute film showcasing our mini makeover. The videos drove consumers to the CIL site, where we served up other Beauty on a Small Budget tips, not to mention a paint calculator that automatically figured out how much paint they needed based on their room size. Each and every element of the campaign was designed to show consumers just how easy it is to make a big difference in the look of their space, even on a small budget. 
  • Consumers were given a challenge to use CIL Premium paint, document the process and share the results on social media for a chance to win $5000 of The Home Depot gift cards + a consultation with a top Canadian Designer. We also engaged influencers (designer and bloggers) to take the CIL Premium challenge and share the results.
  • The campaign was communicated in-store via POS and there was a media partnership with the Roger & Marilyn show .


c) Media Plan Summary


a) How did the work impact attitudes and behaviour?

  • There were 19,600 unique views to the program webpage during the campaign timeframe.
  • CIL Premium is a sub-brand exclusive to one retailer – tracking studies and brand measures are not available. 

b) What Business Results did the work achieve for the client?

  • Online videos garnered 7.6 million hits
  • Paint sales saw a 23% $ increase and a 26.8% volume increase, far exceeding the 9% sales lift objective.
  • The CIL Premium Challenge resulted in 25 million media impressions, 10X over target
  • 138 total contest entries from across Canada (+72% vs target)
  • The #CILPremiumBeauty hashtag generated more that 465 social media posts
  • 60% of the social media impressions were garnered organically, attesting to the powerful online conversation and CIL’s social media activity outperformed its competitors – BEHR and Valspar

c) Other Pertinent Results

  • The campaign results are impressive as they were achieved not during prime painting seasons (spring) but rather in October and November.

d) What was the campaign’s Return on Investment?


Section VI — Proof of Campaign Effectiveness
a) Illustrate the direct cause and effect between the campaign and the results

CIL Premium had not been previously supporting with an integrated campaign, so results are not available for a previous promotional period. Additionally, CIL Premium is a sub-brand exclusive to one retailer – tracking studies and brand measures are not available.

b) Prove the results were not driven by other factors
Campaign spend vs. history and competition:

  • Distribution of CIL Premium remained the same, it’s exclusive to The Home Depot. The price of CIL Premium (eggshell, satin and semi-gloss) was lowered from June 1, 2015 – Nov 29, 2015 to $29.97. Regular prices run from $30.97 - $32.97. The campaign ran from September to November 2015. There was a Home Depot weekend only paint promotion from Oct 22 – 28 for all paints – not just CIL. 
  • Prime painting season is in spring, the CIL Premium campaign launched in September. The campaign was able to achieve significant growth (23%) over the previous year’s sales in a non-peak period. 

Pre-existing Brand momentum:




Changes in Distribution/Availability:


Unusual Promotional Activity:


Any other factors: