Poundland Triggers PR Storm Over Controversial #ElfBehavingBad Campaign

By |2018-12-11T17:03:10+00:00December 25th, 2017|Advertising, Branding, Content Marketing, Marketing Satire, PR, Social Media|

The marketing team at Poundland have undisputedly won the title of the most controversial Christmas ad campaign of 2018.

In a series of X-rated Tweets from the discount retailer, the #ElfBehavingBad campaign triggered hysteria on social media.

The Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) inevitably received a number of complaints about the ‘distasteful’ nature of the content.

The most controversial Tweet pictured an Elf ‘teabagging’ a female doll, with the upmarket tea brand Twinings inadvertently featured within.

Fearing that their brand may be damaged by the Tweet, Twinings felt compelled to make a public announcement to distance themselves from the campaign.

Some users even speculated that Poundland’s Twitter account had been hacked – which their social media team shamelessly ruled out.

The latest in their montage of tweets included their response to the outrage:

Brand marketing director Mark Pym added fuel to the fire with this statement:

“The love on Facebook has been overwhelming, and that’s because it connects with our shoppers. We’re proud of a campaign that’s only cost £25.53 and is being touted as the winning marketing campaign this Christmas!”

Perhaps the most surprising element is that it was achieved without a large ad spend. Instead, Poundland relied wholly on the content itself to drive organic engagement.

Whether it offended or amused you, the social media team at Poundland have now got what that they came for: your attention.

I wonder how long it will be until we see #BoycottPoundland trending?

About the Author:

Jamie Neal
Jamie follows all things digital marketing, with a primary focus on consumer behaviour, branding and creative content. Jamie also keeps a close eye on new developments in the evolving world of social media.

Leave A Comment