Christmas and New Year provides an opportunity not only to plan campaigns for 2018, but also the chance to reflect on what we’ve achieved during the last 12 months.

So, as we plan PR, social media and marketing campaigns for our own clients, here are five of our favourites from across the world in 2017.


Following a largely negative reaction to Pepsi’s attempt at a similar campaign, featuring Kendall Jenner, Heineken’s Open Your World campaign tried to showcase the humanity behind political differences, while placing emphasis on the importance of kindness and understanding.

Open Your World brought together people from opposite ends of the spectrum – such as a climate change denier and a climate change activist – and tasked them with team exercises, before later revealing their polarising opinions.

Each pair was then offered a Heineken to share, to discuss their differences, to which all obliged.

The campaign generated 50,000 Facebook shares in just one month.


Against a backdrop where marketing typically promotes an agenda of profit over people, Patagonia used their first ever TV advert as a platform to encourage people to protect the land they inhabit.

The outdoor clothing brand produced an advert that features comment on corporate responsibility and environmental consciousness, over footage of sweeping mountains, nodding oil pumps and fallen trees.

One of the key messages was that evil does not have to be an overt act; it can be merely the absence of good. And that If you have the ability, the resources, and the opportunity to do good – and you do nothing – that can be evil.


#LikeAGirl was Always’ ‘epic battle’ to keep girls’ confidence high during puberty and beyond.

When Procter & Gamble revived the campaign for 2017, figures told us that 50% of girls feel paralysed by fear of failure during puberty and that 75% agree that social media contributes to this fear.

Under their Always brand, P&G utilised the hashtags #LikeAGirl and #KeepGoing to convey the message that failure is okay, because it can help people learn and grow.

Videos produced features stars like Alicia Dixon discussing their own experiences of failure, and how it helped shape who they are today.


The iconic British drinks brand made their product indispensable to selected commuters when they attached a special chip to the bottom of promotional bottles that enabled free passage through ticket barriers on the London Underground.

Having originated as a medicinal product in the early 20th century, transitioned toward sport and leisure in the 90s and 00s, and now making inroads in to the wider energy drink market, the activity placed their product at the centre of Londoners’ energy-sapping working day.

Making the consumption of your product an intrinsic part of your customers’ habits is massive for brands, and what better way than by marrying the customer journey with their commute to work each morning?


The New Zealand fire service created a virtual 360-degree house fire, which allowed participants to participate and try and escape, while overcoming various barriers, such as locked doors and jammed windows as the blaze gets worse.

The aim was to highlight how serious house fires can be and to encourage people to think about how they’d escape in case of emergency.

The final video received more than 86,000 shares, with more than 10 million views.

Now you’ve looked at the good ones,
take a look at these spooktacularly bad PR fails