PrettyGreen celebrate their 15th Birthday with a UK Agency Award Win

2023 was the year that PrettyGreen turned 15, it’s been amazing to mark this milestone by having our agency culture AND our client work recognised as award-winning at the UK Agency Awards!

The PrettyGreen Group also includes our sister agencies What They Said (Influencer Marketing) and The Producers (Experiential) and has a vision to deliver ‘Less Ordinary’ communications. By this, we mean using our superpowers across PR, Social, Influencer and Experiential Marketing to create meaningful connections between brands and audiences to drive measurable commercial impact.

Play-Doh Parenting is Messy campaign which won in the Best PR Campaign category embodies this Less Ordinary vision.

Our challenge for this campaign was to overcome consideration issues and connect parents of 2-5-year-olds with the Play-Doh brand on an emotional level and increase their share of voice in the run-up to Christmas – the most important time in the marketing calendar for toy brands.

Play-Doh is a bit messy and despite messy play having HUGE benefits for kids’ imagination and creativity, parents still leave Play-Doh in the cupboard. Yep, Play-Doh has a consideration problem! We also know from research that parents feel overwhelmed daily by societal pressure of all the things they ‘should’ be doing to support their children’s development. Child Yoga, Children’s French, this app, that app. But the truth is almost ¾ of UK family homes have working parents. So, often they don’t even have time to empty the bin, and they don’t need to be made to feel bad about it.

Our strategy was to position Play-Doh as the parental ally to the pressure. The remover of guilt; the chilled to the highly strung; the unstructured to the instructions. Parenting is Messy is a funny, emotive (long-term) platform that sees and doesn’t judge the time-poor, ball-dropping, accidentally swearing, forgot-the-nursery-world-book-day-outfit parents and tells them it’s normal.

We launched Parenting is Messy through a light-hearted campaign with multiple activations featuring:

A free-to-download book: Notes on Messy Parenting was 32 pages of relatable, messy stories on parenting fails from 12 influential parents.

Website: where those hearing about the campaign via earned, social, and paid media could go and download our book Notes on Messy Parenting. The website also housed a digital shredder where parents type in what they felt most parental guilt about and cathartically shred their words.

Event: House of Messy Parenting.  A Guilt Liberation Experience serving the role of content factory for creators and media as well as a family day out with a let’s get messy creativity space for kids to go wild with Play-Doh. 

Ambassador: Single parent Ian Watkins (aka H from Steps) acted as Play-Doh’s media spokesperson contributing to the campaign creation and becoming the voice of Messy Parenting – speaking up for parents across the UK encouraging everyone to embrace the mess!

And it worked! Play-Doh’s earned media SOV increased to 78%, stealing share from competitors at a crucial commercial moment (57% SOV increase YoY) and we saw sales increases across key Play-Doh products during and immediately after the campaign period. We call that Less Ordinary.

Our Less Ordinary vision doesn’t just apply to how we partner with our clients. Our agency group vision is built around the three pillars of People, Purpose and Performance and so Less Ordinary also runs through how we run our business operations and treat our people.

Our Less Ordinary people culture is focused around ensuring that our staff feel Belonging & Balance. And, our extensive and flexible benefits offering, commitment to fair and equal pay and high value placed on employee progressions and development all ensure that these two principles are being imbued. Our Ways of Working celebrates individuality and promotes, provides and protects the mental wellbeing of all our staff. We encourage a balanced working week, have collaborative workspaces and have communication etiquette, ensuring everyone’s week works for them.

In the last 23 months we have also been recognised as top 5 Campaign Best Places to Work 3, as PR Week Best Places to Work and PRCA’s D&I Agency of the Year 2022. We’re so proud to now add UK Agency Awards Best Agency Culture to this list!


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