Turning A Tasty 30: Panda Liquorice

Panda Liquorice is one of the UKʼs best selling liquorice brand. With no UK advertising budget, PR is the mainstay of consumer marketing and needed to help punch above its weight.

Panda Liquorice celebrated its 30th anniversary in the UK in 2012. Smoking Gun PR was briefed to create a big media, stunt-driven splash to mark the occasion. friendly and accessible brand, so all activity needed to reflect these values.


Secure high impact media coverage
Create engagement online
Boost brand awareness and drive sales

Strategy & Plan

To help Panda celebrate its 30th anniversary the team turned to other famous icons also celebrating 30 year milestones in 2012.

HRH Prince William was the perfect candidate to get the Panda treatment. To celebrate his 30th birthday Smoking Gun PR commissioned an artist to create a 20ft mosaic, from thousands pieces of Panda Liquorice, to resemble a famous photograph of the Prince.

Aerial photography captured the build and was issued to media over the weekend prior to Love Liquorice Day.

A teaser campaign ran across Facebook & Twitter, encouraging anyone who saw the build to like the page to receive a sample.

Research showed that the hit song Eye of the Tiger by Survivor, famous from the Rocky films, was also 30 in 2012. To maximise online engagement, video content was produced of the Panda Liquorice panda character in the streets of London & Manchester to recreate iconic training sequences from the Rocky films. This film was launched on Love Liquorice Day and seeded from Youtube for the following weeks. A ‘fan response’ film was also posted. This added the original footage into the corner of the first edit, to show the similarity between the two.

Measurement & Evaluation

Campaign success was measured on the following factors:
Coverage and total opportunities to see
Social media engagement
YouTube video views


Prince William achieved 241 items of editorial coverage including the Metro, Daily Mirror, Daily Record, Scotsman, ITV News online, Finnish TV news and US celebrity gossip websites.
Panda Balboa currently has over 26,000 views on Youtube and achieved over 40 pieces of editorial coverage online
Peak viral reach of nearly 4,000 Facebook users during birthday activity


241 pieces of editorial coverage
Panda Balboa currently has over 26,000 views on Youtube

Watch Video

Lisa Gawthorne, Managing Director at Bravura Foods Ltd says:

"The team at Smoking Gun are highly skilled in the art of delivering smoking hot results that work for your brand(s). They not only understand the heart of a brand, but they work creatively to expand the life, the soul & the character of the brand by engaging in meaningful communications with consumers. They dare to be different, they get results, above all they create campaigns that not only win awards but remain in the mind for a very long time."