Short List
CategoryA05. Consumer Services / Business to Business
Idea Creation MINDSHARE CHINA Shanghai, CHINA
Idea Creation 2 dentsu mcgarrybowen Shanghai, CHINA
Media Placement MINDSHARE CHINA Shanghai, CHINA
Production dentsu mcgarrybowen Shanghai, CHINA
Post Production dentsu mcgarrybowen Shanghai, CHINA
Additional Company UNITE CHINA Shanghai, CHINA


Name Company Position
Stephanie Ju Unilever Client
Vera Chow Unilever Client
Sabrina Li Unilever Client
Helen Cai Unilever Client
Debbie Dong Unilever Client
Ada Li Unite China Account Lead
Cecelia Yang Unite China Campaign
April Wang Unite China Campaign
Kaixin Luo Unite China Campaign
Jacque He Unite China Team Lead
John Dawson Unite China Case Study
Nicholas Short Mindshare China Case Study
Alina Yang Unite China Case Study
Annie Chen Unite China Case Study
Kazuki Tsuburaku dentsu MCGARRYBOWEN Creative
Sure Liu dentsu MCGARRYBOWEN Creative
Lin Zhang dentsu MCGARRYBOWEN Creative
Andrew Shee dentsu MCGARRYBOWEN Creative
Eleanor Liu dentsu MCGARRYBOWEN Account Lead
Yu Bai dentsu MCGARRYBOWEN Creative
Si Yang Zou dentsu MCGARRYBOWEN Creative
Diyang Shi dentsu MCGARRYBOWEN Creative
Nian Kang dentsu MCGARRYBOWEN Creative

Why is this work relevant for Media?

The Killer Recipe campaign starts with platform insights from China's leading O2O platform, Dianping. By understanding the connection between restaurants and their customers have through media and taste, this campaign adopts a two-prong B2C and B2B strategy. This complementary media strategy enabled UFS to not only promote it's own products, but prove to restaurants its value by bringing in much-needed young Chinese diners during the post-COVID restaurant recovery period. Finally, performance media based on audience segmentation and data-backed look-a-like modeling enabled UFS to break business silos, connecting sales and marketing to drive superior growth and sales conversions.


Unilever Food Solutions (UFS) is a professional condiment brand serving restaurant owners and chefs. In 2021, however, the business faced two key challenges. Firstly, restaurants were some of the hardest hit by COVID-19. While China managed the pandemic better than most, there were nonetheless lingering effects felt by the industry. Despite the broader economic recovery from COVID-19, consumer spending on meals was still down -17% at the end of 2020 (China Bureau of Statistics). Secondly, young diners – who make up 65% of restaurant consumption in China – have tastes that are changing faster than ever before. Since 2017, UFS has been helping restaurants adapt to changing tastes through their ‘Killer Recipe’ campaign. This campaign inspires restaurant operators with on-trend recipe ideas while promoting UFS' product superiority. Across the business, our target was to increase sales, as well as increase product penetration by +45%.

Describe the creative idea / insights (30% of vote)

As restaurants recovered from the lingering effects of COVID-19, Unilever Food Solutions needed to be more than a supplier, it needed to be a supporter for our customers. To transform recipe inspiration into business impact, we linked our B2B campaign with a B2C element to drive footfall and sales for our restaurant chefs. There were two key pillars of this strategy: B2C: Build an appetite for our Killer Recipes among young Chinese diners to drive footfall to participating restaurants. B2B: Convert chefs into customers through recipe inspiration, amplifying diner experience and transforming data into a frontline sales tool. Running concurrently, this strategy built a holistic marketing ecosystem for Unilever Food Solutions to help sell through their products and support their customers.

Describe the strategy (20% of vote)

STEP ONE: BUILD APPETITE To find the recipes that would attract young Chinese diners, we collected and analysed big data from Weibo and Dianping for inspiration. Then, working with four external expert chefs, as well as more than 70 brand consultants and gourmet KOLs, we developed dish concepts based on UFS ingredients. These concepts were then tested by 600 high-value young diners who voted on the final recipes. We unveiled the Killer Recipes at four top restaurants, attended by 60 KOLs who helped share the experience on Douyin and Weibo, while we also created a short branded film to drive social buzz. We then shifted towards converting interest into footfall. We promoted the dishes on Dianping, WeChat and Douyin, targeting ‘young foodie’ audiences. On China’s top lifestyle app, Dianping, users could download dish coupons that they could redeem directly at participating restaurants, linking content directly to footfall.

Describe the execution (20% of vote)

STEP 2: CONVERT CHEFS INTO CUSTOMERS As restaurant operators and chefs saw Killer Recipes’ demand take off, we targeted them, incentivising Chefs and owners to download the Killer Recipes to include on their own menus. Restaurants who joined the initiative were supported in their promotion of the Killer Recipe dishes with offline pop-up merchandising. We worked with Tencent to create a specific chef target audience based off look-a-like-modeling from UFS' official WeChat account. The chefs were targeted with UFS ads, driving to an H5 page where they could download the Killer Recipes and join the initiative, in exchange for leaving their contact information for the UFS’ sales team. In addition to passing on key contact information, we also shared with our frontline sales team which “Killer Recipe” dishes the lead had show interest in and linked restaurants to Tencent Maps to seamlessly get them to the right place.

List the results (30% of vote)

The campaign effectively delivered scorching hot results for Unilever Food Solutions across its B2C and B2B objectives: B2C: The ‘Killer Recipe’ topic on Weibo was viewed 200 million times within 10 days of launch (+193% YOY) and the brand video was viewed 19 million times. More than 255,000 consumers downloaded coupons on Dianping within 6 days (+88% above forecast). B2B: (See confidential results) This led to a 460% increase in UFS’s sales, outpacing market growth 6.8x Market penetration improved 118% vs our target of +45%. Thanks to our innovative B2C2B approach, Unilever Food Solutions is now in a strong position to lead the restaurant industry’s recovery in 2021.