Axe in space as part of personal grooming line promo

January 10, 2013  |  Chris Powell  |  Comments

In space, nobody can see your sheen.

As part of a new global promotion supporting the launch of its new Axe Apollo line of personal grooming products, Unilever is offering a chance for 22 people – including one Canadian – to travel to outer space with the Amsterdam-based Space Expedition Corporation (SXC).

To promote the Apollo launch, Unilever has created the Axe Apollo Space Academy and appointed famed astronaut Buzz Aldrin – who piloted the Apollo 11 spacecraft that first landed on the moon in 1969 – as its figurehead.

Global creative developed by London’s Bartle Bogle Hegarty (BBH) and adapted for the Canadian market by Union, will drive people to, where they are being asked to create an “astronaut profile” and write a submission explaining why they deserve to go to space.

The people whose submissions receive the most votes will be invited to the Axe Global Space Camp in Orlando, where the final 22 participants for the space flight will be selected based on their performance in a series of space simulation challenges.

In addition to TV, social media and experiential marketing, the Canadian campaign will feature in-store elements and a partnership with Cineplex that uses the movie chain’s D-Box motion-equipped seats during pre-roll advertising.

Other Canadian agencies involved with the campaign include Bob (experiential), Harbinger (PR and Facebook content) and Mindshare Canada (media).

Axe Apollo is the biggest brand launch in the personal grooming product’s 30-year history, said Kyle Marancos, senior brand building manager with Unilever Canada in Toronto. The product line features body spray, shower gel, deodorant and a two-in-one shampoo and conditioner.

“The brand is about helping guys look and feel their best, and nothing makes a guy look better than having a great story,” said Marancos. “This campaign is about giving guys that story.”

Axe – which is also known as Lynx in some parts of the world – has secured 22 seats aboard SXC’s suborbital spacecraft, known as the Lynx, which attains heights of more than 100 kilometres. Each seat costs a reported $100,000.

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