The first ads, which will launch this Saturday (8 February), mark the first time Ikea has spoken about sustainability in a UK campaign. The TV and radio ads, created by agency Mother, focus on getting consumers to swap incandescent lightbulbs for LED in order to save energy.
The spots show a forest in the dark, with each tree then artificially illuminated until most of the forest is lit up. It includes a message about Ikea’s commitment to sustainability with a voiceover saying: “By 2016 we will only sell energy efficient LED lightbulbs. Sometimes small things can make a big difference.”
Speaking to Marketing Week, Ikea’s UK and Ireland marketing manager Peter Wright says the ads aim to explain who Ikea is. It harks back to its beginnings in Smaland, Sweden, where he says the people are “thrifty and resourceful” and sustainability is a natural way of life, something that is a big part of Ikea’s DNA.
“This is a sustainability campaign but also a brand campaign. We need to explain what we stand for and celebrate that,” he adds.
Wright believes now is the right time for Ikea to speak about its sustainability as people become increasingly worried about their energy bills and look to ways to reduce their energy consumption. He claims that the average house has 26 lightbulbs that typically cost more than £100 a year in energy. By switching to LED lightbulbs he says customers can see up to a 85 per cent decline in that cost.
Ikea will be supporting the TV and radio ads with digital and social media, offering tips and ideas on how to live more sustainably at home. It has also has plans for a “bigger” social media campaign on sustainability later in the year.
The campaign comes after Ikea released its latest sustainability report, which includes plans to own 137 wind turbines and install 550,00 solar panels to help the firm become energy independent by 2020. For every LED lightbulb sold, The Ikea Foundation will also donate £1 to UNHCR, the UN’s refugee agency, to help improve access to lighting, renewable energy and primary education.
The ads are the first part of Ikea’s new “The Wonderful Everyday” campaign, which aims to highlight how everyday activities and the little things can add up to make a big difference and help people have a better life. The sustainability campaign will run until Easter and will be followed up by ads for its new kitchen range, which is set to launch next week (11 February).