Q&A: Special K’s brand manager Sophie Colling

Sophie Colling, Special K’s brand manager, explains how inspiring positive thinking through their latest campaign will encourage people to change their behaviour.

sophie colling
Sophie Colling

Marketing Week (MW): How does Special K’s new weight loss campaign encourage or nudge people into changing their behaviour?

Sophie Colling (SC): The campaign is called ‘What will you gain when you lose?’. It’s designed to inspire women to have a more positive approach to weight loss. We want them to start focusing on the positive feelings they can gain and help them meet their slimming goals over a long-term period rather than just offering a quick fix.

You can see this new weight management philosophy on our online slimming forum – Myspecialk.co.uk – where we are providing women with more credible long-term healthy eating plans and ensuring their weight management journey is as easy and as supported as possible. It’s a support network where women can share experiences and feel that they are in this together.

MW: What activations are you doing around the new campaign?

SC: We had an event at Westfield London where we invited female bloggers and members of the public to star in giant billboards around the centre. We treated them to a makeover and they had their photos taken by [fashion photographer] Joel Anderson. We asked those women to think of a word that will inspire them to achieve their goals – some said ‘I want to gain positivity’ or ‘I want to gain courage’. They were pictured on massive billboards with these inspiring words.

We launched a new TV advert at the end of last December based on the premise that women can’t be defined by a number, whether that’s the number on the bathroom scales or the number stitched on the label in their jeans. We’re saying you can define yourself by choosing a positive word and a positive feeling. We’ve been running our ‘I want to gain…’ hashtag alongside that and featuring people’s answers in our advertising.

MW: How will you measure the response to this campaign?

SC: The campaign aims to reframe the slimming conversation that will always happen between women and move away from negativity and deprivation towards positivity, inspiration and gains.

We can track that in different ways: for example through the visitors to our online slimming plan. We’ve already had 250,000 visitors to date this year and that’s 5 per cent up on last year. We’re also tracking social media conversations and engagement with customers.

Latest from Marketing Week


Access Marketing Week’s wealth of insight, analysis and opinion that will help you do your job better.

Register and receive the best content from the only UK title 100% dedicated to serving marketers' needs.

We’ll ask you just a few questions about what you do and where you work. The more we know about our visitors, the better and more relevant content we can provide for them. And, yes, knowing our audience better helps us find commercial partners too. Don't worry, we won't share your information with other parties, unless you give us permission to do so.

Register now


Our award winning editorial team (PPA Digital Brand of the Year) ask the big questions about the biggest issues on everything from strategy through to execution to help you navigate the fast moving modern marketing landscape.


From the opportunities and challenges of emerging technology to the need for greater effectiveness, from the challenge of measurement to building a marketing team fit for the future, we are your guide.


Information, inspiration and advice from the marketing world and beyond that will help you develop as a marketer and as a leader.

Having problems?

Contact us on +44 (0)20 7292 3703 or email customerservices@marketingweek.com

If you are looking for our Jobs site, please click here