Transforming a bathroom product into an everywhere necessity.
But culture around masculinity and sex faced a seismic shift, leaving Axe behind.
In 2021, the Martin Agency stepped in to help. As AXE's core consumer is young guys, the brand needed to show them that AXE is relevant and worth their time. Most importantly, AXE needed to drastically realign with how Gen Z defines attraction.
Martin's research led them to the strategy that AXE gives guys a power-up for attracting possibilities. Internally, applying AXE gives you the confidence boost that you smell good, which makes you feel good. Externally, AXE’s superior scent is a signal that powers up your presence, pulling you off the sidelines and into the game.
Martin built brand-level cool through their campaign, but that hasn't made purchasing AXE feel exciting.
We began with the insight that moments of self-doubt in young guys can often hold them back. So we wanted to develop a way for AXE to show up and react in real time to help power up guys' confidence and good smell.
What if your hype man could be with you all the time?
The outer wrapping looks like a typical AXE can, but includes a special slit for the consumer to tear off, revealing the Hype Can underneath.
Martin asked us to give a new reason for customers to want to grab a can of AXE in the store. This activation makes the physical cans the star. Whenever guys use their spray can, they can easily get a hit of hype. These AXEfirmations help guys overcome those moments of self-doubt and conquer whatever task their day has in store.
The back of the can contains a QR code that customers can scan for the chance to win exclusive drip.
We wanted to give users a stylish new way to rep their can with a fashion bag collection that feels like a natural next step from AXE's work with Lil Baby, taps into the trending resurgence of Y2K fashion, but also has some of the ridiculousness of meme culture Gen Z gravitates towards.
You have to keep the can close because you never know when you'll need a Hit of Hype. But who says you shouldn’t do it in style?
Our star item is reminiscent of every Y2K dad's cellphone holster, the AXE holster. We will also have fanny packs and cross body bags, perfect for holding your AXE can and whatever else you may need.
My team did a lot of whiteboarding, mind-mapping, and brainstorming to quickly ideate and arrive at a consensus quickly.