Guardian Weekly unveils new ad campaign in select European cities

The Guardian yesterday launched a new marketing effort in Berlin and Dublin for its international news magazine, Guardian Weekly.

Guardian Weekly unveils new ad campaign in select European cities
Kate Davies: “From politics to the climate crisis, we know that European readers turn to the Guardian for a global perspective.”

The activity includes static and digital out-of-home advertising in both capital cities, including billboards and posters, plus prominent placement in Dublin’s sought-after digital Golden Square and its public transport buses.

Based around the central tagline ‘Find clarity’, the campaign presents the Guardian Weekly as a way for readers to digest news differently, offering a global perspective and ‘a pause for thought’ moment in an increasingly chaotic and confusing world.

The ads feature bold, surrealist artwork from illustrator Rafael Alejandro that depict three global news events – coronavirus, Trump and the environment – with each design running alongside an accompanying statement that ‘The world is…’ ‘confusing’ (coronavirus), ‘absurd’ (Trump), and ‘in crisis’ (the environment). A related Guardian Weekly cover appears next to the illustrations, inviting people to ‘Find clarity’, with the clustered imagery juxtaposed against the calm, clear Guardian Weekly magazine.

A special 3D build of the creative will also feature in Dublin, designed to create the illusion of a Guardian Weekly cover popping out of the poster, while additional activity is planned on digital and social media, including ads on YouTube and Twitter.

Kate Davies, Director of brand and awareness, Guardian News & Media, said: "From politics to the climate crisis, we know that European readers turn to the Guardian for a global perspective. Our Guardian Weekly magazine offers a weekly digest of news from across the world, allowing people to step back from the day-to-day, reflect and find clarity. Working with OLIVER to illustrate these uncertain times, we have designed a visually striking creative to promote Guardian Weekly and highlight the Guardian’s strength in offering global readers clear and trusted journalism on the issues that matter."

The Guardian’s European audience has grown significantly in recent years and now accounts for around 17% of the Guardian’s total page views – nearly double what was in 2016, say the publishers.

According to the Guardian, demand for Guardian Weekly has also increased in recent months. The magazine has seen a 15% growth in its overall subscription base since lockdown and coronavirus restrictions were imposed around the world, with Germany (+23%) and Ireland (+77%) emerging as some of the highest growth regions for the publication in Europe.

Sam Jacobs, Creative director, OLIVER agency, said: “Our new Guardian Weekly campaign was based on a key reader insight – that reading the news in 2020, while vital and at times enthralling, can be overwhelming. Guardian Weekly gives readers a measured, global perspective on current events, effectively turning confusion into clarity. We worked with illustrator Rafael Alejandro to create some beautifully chaotic illustrations that allows the calm side of the ads to feel visually serene. As the Guardian’s dedicated in-house team, we collaborated seamlessly with colleagues during lockdown and beyond to deliver this project at a time when readers need it most.”

The new ‘Find clarity’ campaign in Berlin follows on from a Guardian Weekly experiential stunt in the city earlier this year, while the movement into Dublin aims to appeal to new Guardian Weekly readers in a country where awareness of the Guardian is already high.

The Guardian has an ambition of reaching two million supporters by 2022 and recently announced its updated climate pledge.