Ministry of Sound – one of the UK’s most iconic leisure brands - first opened its doors back in September 1991 and almost immediately transformed London’s club scene. Known as the ‘home of dance music’, a number of brand extensions – from festivals to clothing – followed. And in 2017 MOS decided to launch their first ever gym brand, Ministry Does Fitness.
The flagship gym for Ministry Does Fitness was ‘The Arches’, situated at the home of the iconic Ministry of Sound Club in Elephant & Castle, London. Previously the club’s back-of-house alcohol storage vault, The Arches features a club-style sound system, state-of-the-art lighting and offers bespoke, instructor-led high-intensity interval workouts. In true MOS style, it also shunned a whole host of other gym norms and instead included an on-site bar offering a range of drinks from protein shakes to alcoholic cocktails.
As brand guardians, we were asked to develop a campaign to launch the new Ministry Does Fitness brand, with social channels at the fore. In particular our brief was to drive local AB1 women between the ages of 18–35 to the gym, with the aim to reach 75% class occupancy in the first three months of The Arches opening its doors..
Taking into account the unique MOS positioning – and the on-site bar – we tapped into the insight that no-one wants to be good ALL of the time. So we positioned Ministry Does Fitness as the challenger gym brand it truly was. And with that, our mission became to subvert the kale-eating, selfie-taking gym culture and to puncture perfection.
We coined this #begoodtobebad. Encouraging people to be good… and also bad. Everything we did provided content for social. We gifted influencers with ‘eat me then delete me’ doughnuts, installed spiraliser disposal units and set about fly postering competitor gyms and graffitiing the pavement outside local fast food joints to encourage customers to join us at Ministry Does Fitness to burn off their burgers.
Our campaign set new standards for the leisure industry, surpassing even the MOS’ expectations with 78% occupancy in the first month alone. Our hero video on Time Out’s Facebook page received an incredible 1.2 million views, 10.2 thousand shares, and over 11 thousand comments. We also secured 7 further pieces of national and local print; directly leading to more than 30 class trial sign-ups from key titles such as London Evening Standard, The Sun, Cosmopolitan, and Elle UK.
- occupancy within a month of opening
- 1.2 million
- views of our hero video on Time Out - and over 10,000 shares
Launching Ministry Does Fitness
A social-focused example of how to reposition an existing leisure brand into an adjacent area and to use connected, high-impact social, content and PR skills to bring the new brand to life and to target a specific audience (18-35 year olds).