This campaign won (part of the Shop Direct group) and Somo The ‘Best in Mobile Award at the Performance Marketing Awards last year. With entries for the 2016 PMAs closing on Friday (January 29), you can view the full list of categories and enter your best campaign today.  


Christmas is the most highly competitive period for any retailer. As a pure play online retailer, is fighting a war on two fronts: against both online and high street competitors. 

The aim of the Christmas campaign, fronted by celebrity ambassadors, was to drive awareness, consideration and sales at with a focus on seasonal fashion and gifting. The target return on investment of the budget was an ambitious £7 for every £1 spent.


Somo devised a tactical and contextual mobile marketing campaign to amplify and activate’s major offline branding, driving mobile engagement and direct on-device sales. The campaign comprised three key strategies:

–       Amplify and activate TV marketing
–       Hijack the high street with contextually relevant marketing
–       Digital countdown to the last delivery date before Christmas’s primary target audience is 25-45 year old women. This group is very active on both social media and mobile. All the mobile activity was underpinned by a ‘test and learn’ methodology, constantly optimising the best-performing messaging, creative and placements.  

Performance marketing was used as the backbone of the campaign, focusing around the consideration and purchase phases of the customer journey with premium display, social, rich media and re-engagement activity. All the creative had clear calls to action, such as ‘Buy’ or ‘Shop now’.


Amplify and activate TV marketing

Nearly three quarters (72%) of adults regularly dual screen whilst watching TV. In order to capitalise on this behaviour, mobile activity was synchronised with TV ad spots. Using audio recognition technology,’s mobile ads were targeted to coincide with the TV ad soundtrack, current UK hit singles, and competitors’ TV ad soundtracks. These media placements enabled mobile to act as a direct response channel for TV, amplifying and converting the reach of’s TV advertising at the same time as targeting its competitors’.

Hijack the high street

Using hyper-local targeting, Somo sent mobile display and SMS messages to’s target demographic when they entered key shopping destinations. This reminded stressed out shoppers just how quickly and easily they could complete their shopping right there and then on their smartphones.

Digital countdown to Christmas delivery

In the final five days leading up to the cut-off point for Christmas delivery, a live Twitter countdown was pinned to the top of’s feed. During peak Twitter times, the countdown would switch to a video player showing a special message from The Saturdays’ Rochelle Humes wishing customers a Merry Christmas and reminding them how many days they had left to shop. This generated urgency and, as customers could click to shop straight from the countdown, also drove direct sales.


The innovative mobile marketing campaign was the perfect way for to differentiate itself and take advantage of the fact that two thirds of its traffic comes from mobile and tablet during the festive period. The use of mobile to ‘hijack’ shoppers on the high street and listening of competitor ad spots enabled to steal a fair chunk of custom from traditional high street retailers as well as online competitors. had a record-breaking Christmas with total sales up 23% year on year. Mobile was a key driver of this success, fuelling a 45% year-on-year increase in sales on mobile devices. 

The Christmas campaign, run by Somo, delivered more than double the target ROI of 7:1 with an actual attributed ROI of 15:1. The campaign helped contribute to the 4% uplift in Christmas sales year on year for Shop Direct, and the 45% growth seen in number of mobile purchases.