It’s already been a strong start to the year for us at DawBell, with new briefs from Thirty Seconds To Mars’ European tour and album campaign, Spice Girls, You Me at Six, Norwegian music festival Bergenfest, BBC’s ‘People Just Do Nothing’ show as well as start-up tech platforms QRates and mysnapp. Read more about this year’s first quarter highlights below.
ELTON JOHN’S FAREWELL YELLOW BRICK ROAD GLOBAL VR TOUR ANNOUNCEMENT
On 24th January Elton John announced his ‘Farewell Yellow Brick Road’ tour. The 300 + date world tour kicks off in September and marks Elton’s retirement from touring after fifty years on the road.
In a manner befitting of a cultural giant who has constantly challenged barriers and pushed the boundaries, the news was broken in a truly unique manner. DawBell gathered the world’s most important media to a secret event at New York’s Gotham Hall, where they were treated to a truly jaw dropping six minute virtual reality tour through 50 years of Elton’s touring career. Upon removing their VR headsets, the carefully selected media from the UK, Europe, Asia and Australia were greeted by a spine tingling performance from Elton playing some of his biggest hits, before revealing the reason for them all being congregated here today - to witness the announcement of his last ever tour. A 20 minute press conference followed for the media in attendance, hosted by Anderson Cooper.
This was simultaneously broadcast to events in London and Los Angeles, also attended by reporters and influencers from around the globe.
The results were staggering - 4.1k pieces of media, 1.8 billion opportunities to see and a total aggregate reach of 15 billion. The first day of presale alone saw an astonishing 450,000 tickets sold.
GQ BRITs TALENT PORTFOLIO 2018
For the eighth year in a row DawBell looked after the print and online publicity for The BRIT Awards.
One of greatest achievements on the night, coordinated by Senior PR Manager Claire Walley, was the BRITs near-takeover of GQ Magazine.
At the end of last year Jason Iley, The Chairman of The BRIT Awards, challenged us with an incredibly ambitious idea - to shoot a portfolio of BRITs talent down at the show that didn’t just rely on one off print coverage in GQ magazine a month after the event.
After several months of working out photographic/creative timing to get a shot retouched and compiled of all the acts, less than 24 hours after the shoot, plus dealing with space issues at The O2, we managed to make it happen!
Gavin Bond was set-up in a studio backstage in a tiny room next to the dressing rooms and unbelievably we persuaded pretty much every major act that night to take part.
GQ had a small army of technicians working away on individual images of all the acts to put them into what looks like one big amazing group shot. The retouching and manipulation to the image that had to be done in less than 24 hours was insane. It allowed us to send the shot out the following day to The Times who ran the photo in the paper the following morning and across the board online.
GQ also posted the image online and across their social media and ran an epic 18 page BRITs portfolio in their May issue.
We also managed to get RTs and shares from many of the artists involved which amounted to an audience of millions.
The results are stunning!
You can check out our intern, Micaela Sowerby’s post on the night here.
TAKE THAT - THE BAND MUSICAL WEST END LAUNCH
In March we orchestrated the announcement about THE BAND, a new musical by Tim Firth with the music of Take That, coming to The West End in December for a six week run. Gary Barlow, Howard Donald and Mark Owen joined the show’s cast to perform on the roof of The Theatre Royal in Haymarket on a very cold winter morning.
We handled all talent coordination, media attendance, interviews, imagery and post launch coverage as well as commissioning the filming. The story ran as the main feature on The One Show that evening and the lead story in the showbiz columns of The Sun, Daily Mirror, Daily Star and Metro the following day. A podcast with The Sun, alongside a spread in the paper two days later, plus the cover of The Mail On Sunday’s Event Magazine (with a plug for the musical on the front page!) also ran, with more still to come.
The Band will kick off at the Haymarket theatre this Christmas, from 1 December 2018 to 12 January 2019.
JAMES CORDEN IN PETER RABBIT
March saw the movie release of Sony’s adaptation of the beloved Beatrix Potter character Peter Rabbit, voiced by DawBell client James Corden. Since the release Peter Rabbit has dominated the box office, not only becoming the most successful film in the UK in 2018 but also tracking well ahead of other animated classics such as Zootopia and both the Paddington films.
To support the release, the busiest man in entertainment, James flew in from his day job in LA for a whistle stop international media treadmill. In just 48 hours James completed over 35 interviews with journalists and broadcasters from territories including the UK, Italy, Japan, Australia and Germany before flying back to The Late Late Show.
As soon as the UK media got hold of the fact James was in the UK the phones at DawBell got very busy. James is very in demand which is an interesting problem to have as a publicist. The important thing for us was to keep the media focused on the project in hand and avoid the interviews being about Carpool Karaoke and if James will ever make another series of Gavin And Stacey. Working closely with Sony’s excellent PR team we put together a schedule to ensure the interviews were on topic. James was a total pro completing all the interviews with his usual energy and passion.
This was a project that, from the outset, was never going to be straight forward at press. Before watching the film and doing their research, certain areas of the media had decided that Beatrix Potter would be ‘spinning in her grave’ at the new film - despite this being fully endorsed by her estate, and the first time the family had given permission for the adaptation, having turned down countless offers over the years - including offers from Disney. James knew that part of undertaking such a media schedule would be to answer these critics.
The results were fantastic. In a very short space of time James generated positive focused publicity which in turn helped set up the tremendous success the film is still enjoying - not to mention helping to drive a new generation of families and children to the timeless books of Beatrix Potter.
30STM + HARRY STYLES - TOURS
In February, DawBell were bought on board by Interscope in the US to coordinate the UK and European media activity for Thirty Seconds to Mars. The band, founded by Jared Leto and his brother Shannon, were releasing their fifth studio album, America, and embarking on a their 2018 EU/UK tour - The Monolith Tour.
Working closely with the MARS international teams in the US and across Europe, we oversaw all of the band’s promotional activity across 20 EU countries, approving and coordinating all media on the ground in each territory, and ensuring all the best opportunities at TV, Radio, print and online were utilised whilst the band were in market. We also coordinated advanced media interviews in key territories to generate buzz and excitement for the band’s arrivals in each country, alongside localised influencer strategy ensuring attendance of celebrities and social media influencers throughout the tour. We did the same for the London show at The O2, where we had attendance from actor/musician Jamie Campbell Bower (670K Instagram followers), Peaky Blinders star Joe Cole (140K), star of Maleficent/Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children Ella Purnell (300K), James Bourne from Busted (198K), Dunkirk’s Tom Glynn-Carney (49K) and models Malaika Firth (130K) and Gwilym Pugh (300K). UK press highlights ranged from cover features in print with The Telegraph Review and Music Week to online looks including BBC News, InStyle and Creative Review, plus online social media exclusives with Condé Nast Traveller.
‘America’ witnessed the band’s highest charting album to date, reaching the top five of the charts in the UK, US, Italy, Germany and Canada. The Monolith tour is being hailed with acclaim from fans and critics alike as the band continue to sell out arenas across the US and Europe.
After joining us at DawBell in early 2016, dominating the charts with his self-titled debut effort last year, earning a place in the coveted Christopher Nolan’s Dunkirk, and embarking on the first leg of his solo tour, we were incredibly excited to have Harry Styles back on tour. Harry’s shows are always fun, inclusive and breathtaking. On this leg, fans carefully curated a rainbow light display with thousands of pieces of coloured paper over phone flashlights, a beautiful display of unity and a fantastic spectacle to truly translate to press how dedicated and supportive Harry’s fans are - read more about it on the Metro.
Over at DawBell we’ve been continuing to liaise with all international live agents and press for the second leg of Harry Styles - Live On Tour. The team have worked tirelessly against different time zones (sometimes even language barriers!) researching media outlets across the world, and ensuring that the media list for every show was carefully curated. Now, we’re over thirty shows in, and have reached South America!
Carefully poring over every guestlist does pay off. Harry’s shows back on home turf garnered excellent reviews, with four star reviews in both The Telegraph and The Independent, and a full FIVE stars at Harry’s homecoming show in Manchester from the M.E.N.
End The Silence
During the final three months of 2017, the DawBell PR and socials teams worked with anti-orphanage charity Hope and Homes for Children on their ‘End the Silence’ campaign, a mammoth project from start to finish which exceeded both media and fundraising targets. The team held a short masterclass to the wider company to explain exactly what they did: the strategy behind achieving key features and opportunities in print, online and broadcast media, and the huge digital and social media operation which saw the team coordinating and promoting the award winning campaign’s core digital assets, and supporting the ongoing activity across the key social media platforms.
Nutritionist Rhiannon Lambert BSc MSc ANutr came to DawBell towers to host a talk on eating well to cope with a busy, fast paced office life. She shared vital advice on the best eating habits to reduce stress, maintain steady energy levels and the severe effects of too much caffeine! Lambert treated us to this unique opportunity to hear about the science behind the food we eat, and the vital importance of a balanced diet.