Assemblo has been selected as an ABA100® Winner for Comms Excellence in The Australian Business Awards 2021. The Australian Business Award for Comms Excellence [COM] recognises organisations that have successfully implemented initiatives that demonstrate excellence in communications.

“Camberwell’s food and dining industry bounced back after the 2020 lockdowns and continues to enjoy the long-term benefits of the ‘What’s on the menu?’ campaign. Pre-pandemic, most Camberwell traders didn’t have the resources or skills to engage customers outside of the traditional channels they were using, with their primary reliance on foot traffic putting them at a competitive disadvantage compared to hospitality establishments in wider Melbourne that had already made the move to digital. Assemblo’s strategic approach to the campaign means Camberwell’s hospitality traders are now empowered to better market their businesses and reach more customers online and offline.”

James McInerney, Founding Director, Assemblo

Full-service marketing agency Assemblo worked with Camberwell Centre Association, a retail traders association, to develop a strategic campaign to encourage Camberwell locals to support hospitality businesses during the COVID-19 pandemic.

These businesses, which have traditionally relied on foot traffic, were faced with a huge challenge when Victoria went into lockdown during the COVID-19 pandemic. With a 5km travel radius restriction in place, this limited the way in which traders could reach their audience.

To tackle this challenge, Assemblo developed ‘What’s on the menu?’, a creative campaign showcasing the diverse cuisines available in Camberwell that people could enjoy at home during lockdown.

The campaign was designed to draw users to a dynamic digital hub, highlighting the diverse range of international cuisines available to locals, incorporating links to traders’ businesses along with current trading and ordering information. This included a mix of in-depth articles and organic social posts, all leading back to the digital hub. Assemblo maintained a continuous dialogue with individual traders throughout the campaign and ensured information was continually updated, communicating changing trading conditions and accurate contact details.

Assemblo created a bespoke printed booklet which was delivered to 30,000 local homes and businesses within the 5km radius. The high-quality print collateral, printed on an uncoated stock, was designed to cut through and capture the feeling of a restaurant menu.

To further support this campaign, Assemblo ran custom video ads, campaign ads, and article boosts on social media, which used geo-targeting to reach users within the restricted 5km radius.

Objectives were two-fold: to drive awareness of the range of cuisines available to locals who were not previously aware of the offering, and to support Camberwell’s hospitality industry by capitalising on the high sentiment to support local businesses, arresting the decline of sales during lockdown.

The campaign additionally enabled Assemblo and Camberwell Centre Association to demonstrate to Camberwell businesses the value of their membership to the association.

Shifting to digital channels allowed customers to contact and order from businesses directly, via phone and online. This was especially important for many smaller, independent traders who lacked their own online presence and were not tech savvy enough to create these channels quickly.

With businesses reliant on food service apps to deliver their product to consumers, they often incurred significant reductions to their profit margins, due to the commission these apps charged (up to 30 per cent of the total meal cost). The campaign opened a direct line of communication between retailers and customers, allowing retailers to facilitate their own deliveries, thereby avoiding third-party costs.

The ‘What’s on the menu?’ campaign achieved fantastic results including:

  • 60,000+ unique pageviews to articles, trader directory, and website during the campaign
  • More than 100,000+ complete playthroughs (“ThruPlays”) of the promotional video across Facebook and YouTube
  • 700,000+ impressions reaching more than 260,000 unique people on Facebook alone
  • Positive feedback and buy-in from traders and the local community.

The 2020 campaign was so successful that Camberwell Centre Association asked Assemblo to refresh the campaign and re-run it in winter 2021.

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