Noel Leeming - Peoples’ Stories

People stories


Electronics & Appliance retailer Noel Leeming was holding their annual “Massive Sell Out Event”, a special 4-day sale event at Auckland’s ASB Showgrounds. We were tasked with delivering a 60% sales increase, with a flat budget, and without impacting usual nationwide store traffic and sales.

Our insight came from one person in a focus group. Most people we spoke to were suffering from “sales fatigue”; they met the prospect of another sales event with ambivalence.  But one participant sparked the interest of the group when they retold their experiences of the ‘Massive Sell Out’ the year prior. Within a minute, those who hadn’t attended were curious to find out more.

It revealed our insight: in a category awash with big, sometimes disingenuous advertising claims, people need genuine sources to guide their decisions.


Create a communication platform that uses past and current Sell Out customers to convince the masses to attend.

To be as genuine as possible, this would need to be real-time and broadcast; capturing and leveraging real experiences from the Event back out through media as fast as possible. In this way we’d turn real Sell Out customers into advocates with unprecedented speed and scale.

We called this platform “Peoples’ Stories”.


We needed a collaboration like no other: a nimble, responsive content capture team to gather real stories, a flexible production, sales and trafficking team to enable very late copy delivery, and a client prepared to approve ads across multiple platforms “on the fly”.

To achieve this we created a unique, cross-media collaboration between three competing media brands – TVNZ, APN and The Radio Bureau – alongside FCB Media and Noel Leeming. This group created a “production hub” live at the event, capturing customer stories post-purchase and turning these into content that could work across each other’s media, including press, radio, digital and TV, as well as the clients’ owned channels. This was achieved with unprecedented speed, delivering approved radio ads to air within 5 minutes and CAB-approved TV ads within 6 hours of interview.

This approach turned the retail category’s default behaviour on its head by providing the genuine voice consumers needed. Footfall and sales objectives were smashed, with our campaign delivering an ROI of 45:1.