Hails & Fails – May 19th 2023

We’ve got our shades and factor-40 at the ready as meteorologists promise a heatwave is on its way. Regardless of the impending heat, there have been some seriously hot PR campaigns setting fire to this week’s news agenda.

High street home and garden retailer wilko, a Brazen client, won record views as it launched its own TikTok channel, IronmongeryDirect erected a high-vis vest artwork to mark Mental Health Awareness Week and charity Children in Need removed Pudsey’s bandana to highlight unseen challenges.

It was a week to forget for The Irish Times newspaper, though, after an AI hoax saw it publish an opinion piece that claimed Irish people wear too much fake tan.


Wilko TikTok sweeps up record views

High street retail giant wilko, a Brazen client, launched its TikTok account this week with a Supermarket Sweep inspired competition-video which racked up thousands of views in record time.

The competition, to find the household and garden retailer’s biggest fan, gifts the opportunity to take part in a ‘wilko Sweep’ – 10 minutes to dash around a wilko store and fill your trolley with a host of wilko products.

Loads of coverage – plus those all-important video views!

Wilko TikTok sweeps up record views

Hi-vis artwork highlights Mental Health Awareness Week

A giant artwork made of almost 700 high-vis vests was erected in central London on Monday – to commemorate the average number of tradespeople who lose their lives to suicide each year.

The 12 metre-tall mural, just off Charing Cross Road in the heart of London’s West End, has been created to mark Mental Health Awareness Week.

It was unveiled by IronmongeryDirect and ElectricalDirect alongside the firm’s annual Mental Health in the Trades report, which found more than four in five (84 per cent) of UK tradespeople have experienced mental health problems due to work-related issues.

Great coverage won by a showstopping stunt.

Hi-vis artwork highlights Mental Health Awareness Week

Pudsey loses his bandana

Children in Need has launched a new Behind The Bandana campaign to mark Mental Health Awareness Week.

The charity temporarily removed Pudsey’s eye-covering to show “not all of the challenges that children and young people may be facing are visible”.

The campaign encourages conversations between children and parents, carers and other trusted adults “to ensure no child faces their emotional and mental health challenges alone”.

It’s won headlines and photo-coverage everywhere.

Pudsey loses his bandana


The Irish Times is duped by AI

The Irish Times was the victim of an AI hoax this week after it published an opinion piece claiming Irish people wear too much fake tan.

The respected newspaper said it was ‘genuinely sorry’ for the op-ed, which they believe may have been produced ‘at least in part’ using artificial intelligence.

The piece, entitled ‘Irish women’s obsession with fake tan is problematic’ appeared on The Irish Times’ website.

The piece suggested that the widespread use of fake tan in Ireland was a form of cultural appropriation.


The Irish Times is duped by AI

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