Every year I run an non for profit cake event Eat Your Heart Out where I curate a cake shop, it acts as a new business & ‘Miss Cakehead’ awareness exercise. It started in 2010 to show brands and agencies just what I am capable of in terms of generating press & buzz with an experiential stunt / event. In this case of EYHO this PR is also massively beneficial for all the bakers who take part, along with keeping 80% of the money taken (we use 20% to cover our costs). Obviously in 2012 EYHO is now building on previous high profile client work but I wanted to keep doing the event, building on the large fan base the Eat Your Heart Out brand now has, and promoting creativity in cake making. A passion for promoting cake makers as artists starting back in 2010 with the Cake Britain concept for Tate & Lyle (does anyone want to do Cake Britain 2), my first big cake project which was aimed at getting mums baking more with their kids (I love do safe pretty things too).
Doing such a public display of creative & PR skills is utterly nerve wracking. However at the end of the day it’s also solid proof and reassurance to clients that they will be in very safe hands, obviously sending a much stronger message of my capabilities than any amount of Powerpoint documents and coverage boards could do in a million years. As a creative I also feel is is essential to be driven by a passionate for creativity, not just clients budgets and briefs.
One of the new things this year were the anatomical cocktails from James Dance which worked really well and is most certainly something we would look to do again for buzz, PR and customer enjoyment. Other key coverage and buzz drivers where the STD cupcakes from Jenni Powell and the Anal Wart cupcakes from Tattoo Cakes; in 2010 it was Two Girls One Cupcake from Holly & The Icing which was our biggest seller. The lesson learnt… as long as you can justify a concept you can push it to the limits of acceptability, one which certainly shaped my approach for the Resident Evil Wesker & Son Human Butchery campaign.
So how did it go? Well I am delighted to say that Eat Your Heart Out 2012 was a resounding success and built on the hype and press from 2010 to become even bigger – it’s so nice to see it growing up! We sold every single crumb and the shop was jam packed every day from the moment we opened the doors to closing. This year it was supported by Kraken Rum and I also learnt that it’s ruddy delicious. PR wise the coverage and engagement were akin to KIP’s expected from a £250,000 + integrated campaign. Broadcast interviews were given in over 16 different countries, and we featured widely on UK television too including ITV London news (hideous interview with myself), Loose Women & Blue Peter.
Press coverage was widespread and viral and once again I’d like to thank all the journalists and bloggers who take both the concept and Miss Cakehead to their hearts, they are as essential to the success of Eat Your Heart Out as the cakes. Another learning I will take forward is deviating slightly from a key message, resulting in vastly increased press coverage and engagement, is a trade off that works. This year the theme was about medical education and awareness (in 2010 it was 18+),using purposefully provocative cakes to spread the message about things such as STD’s in a way which was so effective it stunned some of the charities who work on promoting similar issues. On this point I would also like to say that we have made all the cakes, and images, from EYHO 2012 available to any charity who wants to use them for educational purposes. More on that soon…
So that’s the theory behind the madness for all of you who wonder why on earth I do a pop up cake shop when I can’t bake. To sign off this post I can also confirm that EYHO 2013 IS happening – the theme is Heavy Metal and will be co-curated with Dan Pugsley from the band Skindred. It’s going to be AMAZING.
Bring on 2013!!!