Staff Reporters
Mar 9, 2015

CASE STUDY: How Tresemmé woke women up from 'sleep styling'

Working with Spark PHD, the haircare brand set out to provide daily inspiration with a social campaign focusing on one woman's promise to mix up her look every day for a year.

CASE STUDY: How Tresemmé woke women up from 'sleep styling'

Background and aim

When you walk down the beauty aisle in a supermarket, one thing hits you: Everything looks the same. Unilever's Tresemmé brand, as the first 'salon brand' sold in supermarkets, once had a distinctive point of difference, but this had eroded into a blur of copycat positionings.

Globally, facing discounting by giants like L’Oreal and Schwarzkopf, the brand had decided to go back to Tresemmé’s positioning: 'Used by professionals'.

Research revealed that among New Zealand women, this positioning didn’t resonate. Was it really 'used by professionals'? Kiwi women saw the polished, PhotoShopped looks of the global ads and dismissed it as marketing gloss, too hard to achieve at home.

The brand and agency conducted further research on a key beauty review site and identified a consistent behaviour: 'Sleep styling': when women don’t consciously think about their hairstyle as part of their everyday beauty routine, but instead default to a couple of standard looks. As one of many woman recounted: “Monday, hair down straight. Tuesday, hair needs washing so tie hair up. Thursday, hair down straight.”


Tresemmé wanted to "wake Kiwi women out of their sleep styling slumber" and help transform their hair everyday, in the process gaining credibility and buttressing its professional credentials.

To do so, the brand wanted to prove—not tell—that it was possible. While competitors delivered six-week campaigns that told people they could have salon-looking hair, the brand wanted to be different: conversational, authentic, locally relevant and, most importantly, present every day.  


Tresemmé challenged one Kiwi woman to break her sleep-styling habits for 365 days with the help of a TRESemmé stylist and products. The TRESemmé 365 Project (T365) followed Anna-Lise Sharma through 365 days.

Daily Instagram photos provided proof of her 365-day commitment, and the agency amplified these across Facebook and a live display format on the website of The New Zealand Herald. The brand also sent Sharma to document street style at Coachella and get behind the scenes at New York Fashion Week (NYFW), generating video and curated online content.

T365 appeared across all beauty destinations, including advertorials in key publications like Fashion Quarterly and coverage in top beauty blogs. Sharma also appeared in-front of key hair tutorials on YouTube, and all content was aggregated in the Tresemmé 365 online hub.

The agency also partnered with radio station The Edge, challenging a DJ to take the test herself.

At the point of sale, Sharma featured in a promotion that gave followers the chance to get a branded brush with any purchase of two Tresemmé products.


Throughout the year, Tresemmé increased sales by 15 per cent in the styling category. A post-campaign NZ Girl survey revealed that 60 per cent of women who had seen the T365 content were inspired to break their sleep-styling habit and had tried a new style.

The agency counted 30 million seconds of engagement with branded content, which equates to 1.24 minutes for every woman aged 18 to 29. Video content views exceeded 340,000 and the campaign delivered over 9 million overall impressions, more than double the population of New Zealand.



Abby Parkin: Media Director, PHD
Courtney Wide: Senior Media Planner, PHD
Mike Harland: Head of Online Content, PHDIQ
Mikaila Hutchinson: Senior Account Manager, Spark PR&Activate
Kristy Mayo: Head of Client Service, Spark PR&Activate
Jane Stanley: Group Strategy Director, Spark Group
Brendan Hewitt: Senior Digital Planner, PHDIQ
Gareth Treacher: Digital Planner / Buyer, PHDIQ
Matthew Vogts: Account Director, Spark PR&Activate


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