Little Helps Day


Brand love


Tesco came to us in 2021 and asked us for help in improving their reputation and building increased consumer trust as the country eased out of lockdown. They aimed to see a successful campaign reflected primarily in growth in trust as measured by YouGov reputation scores and, secondarily, through financial return.



Reputation is the third most significant driver in the British public’s supermarket choice, following quality and value. Tesco’s reputation had been bolstered due to the great work the company had enacted during the COVID-19 lockdown resulting in them being named the number 1 brand for ‘doing the right thing during lockdown.’ Yet as the country eased out of lockdown, Tesco saw this reputation begin to fade.

A key obstacle for Tesco in achieving the customer trust and recognition they deserved was that a lot of their local community work flew under the radar, leaving customers in the dark. We needed to work out how to communicate Tesco’s local community work more assertively in order to reposition Tesco as a branded with a trusted reputation.


We knew that the Tesco banner ‘Little Helps’ was their most successful communications effort. We therefore wanted to utilise this banner for a campaign which would focus on how Tesco offers help to local communities around its stores. This campaign would increase awareness of this work and consequently improve public trust in Tesco.

Growing trust perceptions through advertising is no mean feat as half of the British population view even the most trusted advertising with scepticism. We knew that Tesco would need to overcome several barriers surrounding this in order to effectively meet their targets.

To make this happen, we came up with the idea of ‘Little Helps Day’ which would respond to and overcome these barriers to building trust. Over a single day, Tesco would partner with Britain’s three largest radio networks – Global, Bauer and Wireless – to reach 24 million people through six radio stations. The on-air talent would celebrate stories of Tesco helping the specific communities or niches of each station.

We decided to use radio as the second most trusted media type behind TV, which would not be a suitable platform to reach the specific community audiences we were trying to reach. In order to reach these communities more effectively we would need to overcome the public’s ingrained distrust of brands and business. Therefore, we utilised the public’s trust of local community members by telling dozens of stories of Little Helps, told by DJs from the local regions and/or made specific to the radio station specific listener passion.

This approach enabled the campaign to find an effective balance between scale and specificity as the singular campaign vehicle of the radio enabled a consistent, confident statement to the nation whilst individual content celebrated specific Tesco helps. By condensing the campaign into a 24-hour window, we also achieved a balance between persuasion through repetition and bombarding, and thus irritating, the target audience.


The campaign was a huge undertaking with 22 different Tesco community stories told across 26 different radio stations, each one tailored to context or region. This led to the delivery of 173 million impacts. Reaching an estimated 20.3 million people.

In just one day…

Awareness of Tesco’s community support grew
among radio listeners
of people reported a better impression of Tesco
Agreement that ‘Tesco is good quality’ grew
12 million people were more likely to consider Tesco
of those who heard the campaign
Tesco grew reputation scores to their highest ever level with
20% growth
compared to 2020, ranking Tesco #2 in the category. This was Tesco’s highest reputation score achieved in YouGov’s tracker

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