Digital PR Spotlight: 3 campaigns we loved in October 2023

Autumn is officially in full swing; bringing with it Halloween, pumpkin-spiced lattes, menopause awareness month and the start of a brand-new financial quarter. This has led to some particularly thought-provoking and powerful digital PR campaigns, three of which we’ve touched on below in our ongoing series, the Coveragely Digital PR Spotlight. With that said, here are three campaigns we loved in October 2023:

Dunelm: Waking up to menopause

October is World Menopause Month – with the 18th of October specifically marking World Menopause Day. Both the month and day aim to raise awareness, break the stigma and highlight the support options available for improving health and wellbeing.

As a member of the Workplace Menopause Pledge and a company with a predominately female demographic, Dunelm conducted its own survey to uncover how a lesser-known symptom for perimenopausal and menopausal women – sleep deprivation – impacts women. As a seller of duvets, pillows and bedding, this offered a natural link to their brand.

The campaign performed well, securing 30+ links to both the landing page and their homepage, from a mix of national and regional UK publications.

Stand-out coverage:

  • The Independent (DA 94): Study reveals why millions of women wake up at 3.29am
  • The Guardian (DA 95): ‘It’s not a nice way of living’: Kelly Holmes on her struggle with menopause insomnia
  • Mirror (DA 94): Millions of women waking up at 3.29am every day unable to sleep in ‘concerning’ habit
  • Metro (DA 92): Why millions of women are awake at 3:29am
  • Wales Online (DA 90): Millions of women are waking up at 3.29am – here’s why
  • Chronicle Live (DA 86): Menopause causing millions of women to suddenly wake at 3.29am – here’s how to tackle the sleep issue

Why it worked:

As menopause is a life stage experienced by 50% of the population – with an estimated 13 million people currently peri or menopausal in the UK, and many more seeking to better understand it – this campaign naturally had a broad appeal.

Plus, as we discussed in our summer campaign favourites, journalists and media outlets are always on the lookout for original data that they can use to discover new trends, issues and patterns, which is exactly what Dunelm provided.

Their key statistic – the fact that insomnia has harmed the emotional well-being of 69% of menopausal and perimenopausal women – was not only unique, but also shed light on a widely experienced yet underreported issue.

Many journalists focus on covering stories that align with social or health-related advocacy movements, and with both Menopause Awareness Month and Day falling in October, the data was particularly newsworthy.

Plus, we can’t overlook the fact that the involvement of well-known figures, celebrities and or influencers can significantly boost the visibility of any campaign. For this one, Dunelm interviewed Dame Kelly Holmes, who spoke openly about her own experience of menopause, adding even more relatability and credibility to the piece.

Spa Seekers: Pumpkin Spiced Latte Spa Day

If there’s one thing synonymous with Gen Z, millennials and the autumn season; it’s pumpkin spice lattes. Spa Seekers decided to take advantage of this with their latest campaign, the ‘Pumpkin Spice Latte Spa Day’ package.

They claimed visitors could ‘spice’ up their spa break with the warm, inviting aromas of cinnamon, nutmeg, clove, and of course – pumpkin. The unique offering also included the ‘Make Me ‘Gourd-geous’ Facial and a Pumpkin Pie Massage.

Unsurprisingly, this one-of-a-kind experience garnered plenty of media attention throughout the UK, the US and even France, with a total of 144 external backlinks to their landing page.

Stand-out coverage:

  • Metro (DA 92): Pumpkin spice girlies, you can soak in a PSL hot tub at this spa experience
  • MSN (DA 94): You can soak in a pumpkin spice latte hot tub at this spa experience
  • Daily Star (DA 92): World’s first pumpkin spice spa day comes with latte filled hot tubs and facials
  • Fox Business (DA 89): Pumpkin spice latte lovers can visit this spa offering PSL hot tubs and pumpkin pie facials
  • Doctissimo (FR) (DA 82): Pumpkin spice latte : une vague orangée (et épicée) déferle sur l’univers de la beauté
  • Prestige (DA 58): From wine to gin to pumpkin spice latte, now you can bathe in your favourite drink

Why it worked:

Firstly, the sheer popularity of pumpkin spice lattes definitely played a role in this campaign’s success, as fans await the annual arrival of ‘PSL season’. They’ve become Starbucks’ most popular seasonal drink of all time and Google Trends shows a huge surge in popularity worldwide every single autumn. 

Riding on such an established trend gave this campaign immediate relevance, widespread appeal and a seasonal, timely hook.

The concept of a spa day centred around pumpkin spice lattes is novel and a bit of a marmite concept – you either love it or think the prospect of bathing in PSL is downright weird. But a love-it-or-hate-it story is a positive thing for journalists because anything that triggers debate (in this case, lighthearted debate) is certain to drive clicks and comments to their articles.

Spa Seekers also provided unique imagery for the piece: a bunch of pumpkins surrounding a hot tub. It’s fair to say it’s a scroll-stopper. Articles with eye-catching visuals are more likely to be clicked on and shared on social media platforms, so this undoubtedly played a role in capturing the attention of the media.

Lastly, the hashtag #PumpkinSpiceLatte has almost 900k posts on Instagram alone. This meant the campaign had a high potential for social media sharing, which likely amplified the reach of the campaign even further.

Rightmove: Rental Price Tracker

October marked the start of Q4, meaning RightMove – the UK’s most popular property website – released its ever-popular Rental Price Tracker for the prior quarter, Q3.

Their quarterly updates share the latest stats, insight and trends for the British rental market, including national average asking rents in and outside London and the average quarterly change in asking rents, as well as regional trends. They include an easy-to-understand snapshot of national and regional rental prices, including a map, but users are also able to download a more in-depth report.

Their landing page has stacked up 773 backlinks to date, with the 2023 report landing coverage all over the British regional and national press, alongside personal finance and property websites.

Stand-out coverage:

  • The Guardian (DA 95): Supply shortages and mortgage rate rises push UK rents to highest point ever
  • Sky News (92): Rightmove reveals average rents in London and Britain overall
  • Metro (DA 92): Map shows where rent is rising fastest outside London
  • This Is Money (DA 91): Average asking rents outside London rise 10% in a YEAR, Rightmove says
  • Big Issue (DA 72): Rents in UK are rising at highest rate in decades. Will they keep going up?
  • Money Week (DA 66): Rents hit a record high – but is the opportunity for buy-to-let investors still strong?

Why it worked:

Rightmove has been sharing their rental price insights for years, but given the ongoing cost of living crisis across the UK, there’s no surprise it’s even more newsworthy in 2023. This year has brought rising inflation levels, soaring energy costs and rocketing insurance premiums; making Rightmove’s data extremely timely and relevant.

In addition, Rightmove has credibility. Their data was produced from factual data of actual asking prices of rental properties currently on the market – a whopping 600,394 asking rents in total. They’re a well-known, reputable and trusted entity in the property industry, which automatically makes journalists and news outlets more likely to cover their content.

Featuring the rental price increases both in and outside the capital also broadened the geographical scope of the campaign, meaning it captured the attention of the many regional news outlets across the UK, including the Manchester Evening News.

Lastly, Rightmove releases its Rental Price Tracker every single quarter. They’ve likely built strong relationships with specific property journalists, who await the updated information each quarter. Their landing page also benefits from historic links, as they simply update the same landing page with the latest statistics. This means they secure a recurring chance to score additional links.

Gareth Hoyle
Share this post