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5 min read

Campaign Crunch #1: How we newsjacked Adele’s ‘30’ album to gain visibility for Funky Pigeon

Campaign Crunch is a series from Impression’s Digital PR team that goes behind the scenes of our favourite campaigns. We chat with the creative minds behind the work to deep-dive into the idea, the execution and our key learnings. 

In the first instalment of Campaign Crunch, we reveal our process for devising and delivering a campaign for greeting cards company, Funky Pigeon. Our work positioned the brand amongst coverage and conversation around Adele’s much-anticipated album, ‘30’, said to be about her divorce. 

Ceryn Morris, Digital PR Strategist at Impression was the brains behind the campaign. Here’s what she had to say:

What were you helping the brand achieve?

The long-term objective was to increase search visibility of the /cards/ areas of Funky Pigeon’s site while also impacting the site’s overall visibility and building brand awareness. Focusing on Funky Pigeon’s offering and USPs, we opted for a creative, product-led approach for this campaign, a great way to land deep category links and lean into the brand expertise and offering.

Where did the idea come from?

Celebrity news, film and TV characters and trending memes are consistently used to create funny, engaging greeting cards. At the time of ideation, Adele had announced the release of her fourth studio album ‘30’, following a six-year break.

With Adele being such a household name and with 16 Grammys under her belt, we knew there would be a lot of anticipation, speculation and news surrounding the album release.

Based on previous album releases, trending memes, and conversations across the press and music radio stations, we knew it was going to be an emotional album, nodding to her divorce. Its release date was ahead of the weekend and we anticipated a lot of emotional listening parties for people worldwide. All of these factors provided additional hooks for the campaign.

With all of the above in mind, we created a line of Adele-themed ‘emotional support cards’ for the loved ones in your life. The idea being that you could send this Adele-themed emotional support package to your friends and family potentially going through a breakup/divorce or just prepping for an emotional evening of listening.

What were the essential requirements to make the campaign a success?

Strong visuals! Given it would be the card itself that fronted any coverage, strong visual assets would improve its reach and shareability. Being a product-led campaign we needed to drive journalists and customers to an actual product they could see, browse and purchase.

Our brief to the in-house creative team at Funky Pigeon instructed the cards to say the likes of ‘thinking of you’, ‘let it all out babe’, ‘get ready for a cry’, ‘text me if the album gets too much’, accompanied by Adele themed images.

We were able to create a line of over 30 exclusive designs which were hosted within a new sub-category on the site dedicated to the emotional support cards. This supported our wider objective to increase search visibility of the /cards/ area of the site.

What was the outreach and promotional plan?

With the reactive nature of the campaign, we had a window of just five days to successfully outreach the cards in line with the release of the album – Monday to Friday. Beyond the album launch, we knew the opportunity to achieve coverage would shrink and if we launched too soon, we knew we wouldn’t have the momentum or trend to piggyback on.

We built a media list of lifestyle and shopping editors, along with journalists who had previously published articles on both Adele and product launches. We regularly revisited the media list daily throughout the album launch week to ensure we captured journalists most likely to engage.

What was your favourite element of the campaign and why?

Having the space to be creative along with the opportunity to embrace the newsjacking element and react to a trending story with a custom-made product.

The key to the campaign’s success was having strong designs that would appeal to fans of Adele and her music, which the Funky Pigeon team delivered. Timing was also key, we had a tight deadline to get this activity launched and outreached which added to the excitement of the campaign and its delivery.

What did you learn from this campaign?

Many lessons came from this campaign. I found why there is a lot of value in taking a risk on a bigger creative idea – we knew there was a risk that the idea may not have worked, as with any campaign, but by calculating the risk and validating it with the team we knew there was a strong chance it would perform. We successfully responded quickly to a reactive news story which required a lot of organisation and planning. There was also a lot of learnings to be taken from working collaboratively with Funky Pigeon and their wider internal teams to communicate an idea and reach the same shared vision.

The idea wouldn’t have been possible or as successful if we weren’t able to make a product or if the quality of the product didn’t align with the idea, therefore there was a lot of trust on both sides to deliver a successful campaign.


Overall the campaign was a success. It was shortlisted for two awards and achieved coverage across national, local and trade press while maximising a trending story with the brand’s product and expertise central to the campaign. Read the case study here.

We asked Furvah Shah, Entertainment and Lifestyle Writer at Cosmopolitan UK and formerly Indy100 to comment on why they covered the campaign, and here’s what they said: 

“Indy100 is a very fun publication, which made this story a good fit for the audience. Adele was trending well around the time we received the story, in the lead up to her album, so it was a trendy story that made sense to cover!”

If you want to find out more about this campaign or how we can help get your brand to be at the forefront of trending news, get in touch here.