Awards case study: How ADEY Professional Heating Solutions got its customers to pimp boilers

Here's how one campaign took inspiration from a noughties MTV show to raise the profile of a central heating filter

Summary

ADEY Professional Heating Solutions is a manufacturer of central heating magnetic filters, chemicals and cleaning systems for the domestic and commercial markets. Its key domestic product, Magna Clean removes iron-oxide ‘black sludge’ from central heating systems, ensuring optimum performance, energy efficiency, less breakdowns and cost savings for homeowners.

The brand sells to independent central heating installers via plumbing merchants, so relies on installers to register product warranties to gain visibility of end-user sales.

After research identified installers seldom install a Magna Clean® when undertaking a repair in a customer’s home, ADEY wanted to develop a campaign to reach and engage with installers. It aimed to promote retrofitting a Magna Clean® when in a customer’s home — driving additional product warranty registrations.

The ‘Pimp Their Boiler’ campaign was a tongue-in-cheek way to reach and educate installers as well as 25 key industry influencers about the benefits. The campaign achieved significant success, not only in terms of reach, but a 5% increase in YOY warranty registrations.

Based on the bright and loud noughties’ MTV show Pimp My Ride hosted by rapper Xzibit, where contestants take a car in poor condition, restore and customise it, the campaign theme was loosely based here.

Rendered graphics of boilers featuring spoilers, aerofoils and vinyls were used to visually illustrate how installers could ‘pimp’ their customers’ boilers, increasing the boilers life, enhancing heat efficiency and reducing costs. And by association, installers would be ‘doing their customers a favour’, elevating the perception of the installer as a trusted tradesman and securing loyalty through customer satisfaction.

ADEY Pimp Their Boiler

About

Founded in 2003, ADEY manufacture central heating magnetic filters, cleaning systems and chemicals designed to remove iron-oxide build-up in central heating systems. Build-up can cause significant reduction in central heatings’ performance and efficiency and is proven to increase energy costs for homeowners.

Five million UK and European homes currently have a Magna Clean® filter, which are traditionally fitted during a new boiler or central heating system install.

Strategy

Grow the market by promoting retrofitting of products

Research found 83% of installers recommend fitting a Magna Clean® filter when installing a new boiler, but 87% don’t when in customers’ homes undertaking annual servicing or repairs. This presented a significant opportunity for ADEY to increase indirect sales via plumbing merchants, where the product is purchased from.

Overcome installer objections to fitting product

Customer research identified a number of barriers that needed to be overcome: price, perception of value by the customer, space required to fit the Magna Clean® filter, and the view that a system ‘flush’ is enough to ensure an older central heating system works to its optimum ability.

Take advantage of the winter season

ADEY experiences a degree of seasonality as winter repairs, servicing and breakdowns occur mostly between October and February. Due to this, there was an immediate opportunity to take advantage their busiest time by bolstering product warranty registrations.

Objectives of the campaign

In order to increase the amount of product warranties registered by the end of Q4 2017, ADEY and its agency partner Really B2B relied on four main objectives:

1. Identify and understand audience barriers to retrofitting Magna Clean® filters on previously installed boilers and central heating systems.

2. Develop a short, sharp and impactful campaign using the channels most appropriate to the installer audience.

3. Identify and engage with industry influencers to support education and awareness of retrofitting Magna Clean® filters.

4. Effectively measure and analyse campaign performance to demonstrate success.

The target audience

The core audience was made up of a combination of existing ADEY customers (known installers who regularly register product warranties) and unknown installers, some of which may be installing ADEY filters but not registering warranties, or maybe using a competitive product.

Typically, most of ADEY’s base are one or two-person bands aged between 30-50 who run their own business. Therefore the campaign was focused on the business owner.

In addition, the project team identified 25 key industry influencers who were prolific bloggers and content providers to the plumbing and heating industry and could be used to amplify the campaign’s reach.

Pre-campaign persona research showed installers take their work seriously and are a very proud bunch.

They want to ensure they do a good job for their customer. They want to protect their relationship with the customer by looking after their best interests. They’re acutely aware that looking after their customers will lead to a long-term relationship (and referrals from satisfied customers).

Media, channels or techniques used

  • Infographic: An anchor infographic was created for installers to address key challenges identified in the customer research stage - money saving, the effects that sludge has on central heating systems and how installers can ‘do their customers a favour and make sure their boilers and pipes are kept purring’ were featured.
  • Email: Segmented HTML emails based on customer/prospects were used to promote the campaign content, drive traffic to the ADEY website and encourage retrofit installations.
  • Dream direct mail: Used to target and engage with 25 industry influencers to encourage campaign amplification.
  • Call-to-action: Installers could claim a free thermal camera enabling them to use the equipment on their plumbing jobs and to see the energy-improving heat benefits that a Magna Clean® filter can bring by removing iron-oxide.
  • Youtube video: The direct mail resulted in GasApp, a leading industry influencer, creating a tongue-in-cheek YouTube music video in partnership with Majic Palmer, a ‘street’ rapper/musician/blogger.
  • Social posts: Persona research identified that Facebook was a key social media channel used by installers. A matched audience campaign was used to reach ADEY Installers’ Club members as well as building custom audiences of domestic heating engineers, widening campaign reach. Non-paid social media channels were taken over with the Pimp Their Boiler creative.
  • Digital banners: To support the campaign, web banners were created to be used across existing media placement, extending reach.

​Timescales of the campaign

August 2017: Campaign development.

November 2017: Campaign went live.

Results 

  • 460k+ audience reach.
  • Paid social media click through rate of 1.3%.
  • 2,700 views of the influencer direct mail generated rap video.
  • 5% increase in YOY warranties registered.

“The Pimp Their Boiler retrofit campaign was hugely successful for the business. Brought to life in an incredibly engaging way which resonated 100% with our audience, it made a significant impact on product warranty registrations.”

Frances Perrett, senior marketing director at ADEY Professional Heating Solutions

B2B Marketing Awards 2018 – winners

This submission won the award for 'Best use of customer insight' at the International B2B Marketing Awards 2018 . 'Pimp Their Boiler' for ADEY Professional Heating Solutions by Really B2B.

See the full list of winners

International B2B Marketing Awards 2018