WT Sage campaign celebrates businesses that have ‘Bossed’ lockdown

Sage SMEs - Ivy & Wolf_Mockup_2

Sage, the cloud business management solutions firm, is celebrating the resilience of small businesses that have survived the pandemic with a bold new campaign by Wunderman Thompson.

Sage campaign

The campaign sets out to celebrate business optimism against the backdrop of a year of extraordinary challenges for the UK’s small and medium businesses (SMBs). 

Despite the harsh economic climate, 2020 was named ‘year of the start-up’ with 770,000 UK businesses created and a 24% annual increase in business creations year-on-year.

Businesses are put front and centre in the new outdoor ad campaign, by showing how they are bouncing back from the pandemic and giving them a publicity boost along the way.

The campaign spotlights business owners at work, looking confidently to the future, with straplines reading: ‘Waterman & Webb are Bossing Whitstable’; ‘Thames Roofing is Bossing It; ‘The Baby Cot Shop is Bossing Chelsea; ‘Mandira’s Kitchen is Bossing 2021’; ‘Ivy and the Wolf are Back Bossing It’ and ‘Vogue Dog Grooming is Bossing It’, alongside a group-shot reading ‘Open for Business and Bossing It’.

sage  smes - babycot
Baby steps: New WT campaign for Sage, celebrates SMEs.

Wunderman Thompson’s work takes an emotive approach, reflecting the hard work and positive spirit that has ensured the survival of many of the UK’s small businesses.

The creative executions are designed to celebrate the exciting feeling of exiting lockdown.

The new campaign follows Wunderman Thompson and Sage’s hugely successful TikTok campaign, which asked small business owners and entrepreneurs to show how they’re thriving in 2021. 

With a staggering eight billion views of the challenge and one million entries into the challenge, the campaign saw a groundswell of engagement from SMBs and set a new standard for B2B marketing on the popular platform.

Tough times for SMEs

Jo Wallace, Creative Director at Wunderman Thompson, said: “The past 18 months have been incredibly tough for small businesses. 

“We wanted to help Sage to celebrate and support some inspiring real bosses who are out there smashing it, against all the odds. 

“All the business owners featured in our creative are Sage customers and it’s great to shine a light on their business and the fact they ‘bossed’ lockdown and are now ready to take on the future.”

Sage’s Vice President UKI Marketing, Kirsty Waller said: “Small businesses are the backbone of the UK economy and will power job creation and fuel the economic recovery.

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Onwards: Sage campaign puts SMEs front and centre for inspiring economic recovery.

“We want to celebrate that, give some amazing small businesses a spotlight and reflect a ten-year high in new businesses being registered with Companies House. 

“Those small business bosses who have tirelessly adapted their business models and nimbly adhered to COVID-19 regulations deserve recognition.”

The integrated campaign will be seen across England on 98 sheets, 48 sheets and six sheets, some of which feature a combination of different business owners, while others highlight individuals and duos. 

They will be seen in national roadside and transport out of home (OOH) locations. The media will run in areas close to the businesses, thereby actively letting more people know about them and hopefully steering more customers their way.

There will be five different bus wrap designs in and around London from the end of June, featuring the bosses from the recent TV campaign, and with straplines such as, ‘Hackney bosses coming through’, ‘Get in the boss lane’ and ‘Can’t stop Camden’.

The work follows on from Wunderman Thompson’s ‘Boss It’ brand platform. The campaign went live across TV, OOH, print, radio and social media in November, a month after the agency won the pitch, as part of a fully integrated brand, demand and CX campaign aimed at Britain’s 6 million+ SMEs.