Bunnings builds on brand

Two print ads from one of the nation’s most popular brands, Bunnings, demonstrate how the creative key to advertising new products is keeping the message clear.

CB_Bunnings_DIGITALADvance creative benchmarks normally compare advertisements from companies competing in the same category. This analysis reveals how different styles of execution from the same brand drive reader response. It looks at two Bunnings ads: the first highlights “Low Prices” for a range of products; the second promotes “Carpets” and installation.

Key learnings

These ads confirm the importance of creative consistency.  Use of creative elements­­ from previous advertising – in Bunnings’ case elements such as line illustrations, photos of staff, red headlines, and logos – enables readers to quickly make the link between the ad and the brand. Even in the absence of high-impact creative, this link is sufficient to prompt readers to look at the ad for what’s on offer, and to visit the store to buy the advertised products.

Using recognisable creative elements also makes it easier to promote brand extensions. Rapid brand identification makes it easy for buyers to associate the new offer with the brand, prompts positive reconsideration and re-evaluation of the brand, and provides an additional reason to consider the brand for future purchases.

CB_Bunnings_BothAdsLow Prices

The use of characteristic elements make this an easily recognisable ad for Bunnings, hitting well-established triggers to prompt interest in visiting the store.


Strategically, this ad works to promote their little-known carpet service, and to indirectly support the main brand. Although this ad breaks some conventions for Bunnings, the colours, typography, layout and branding also make it recognisable as an ad for Bunnings.

The creative

The “Low Prices” ad has a strong emphasis on price (headline), staff/service (photograph of a team member) and packed with product offerings. The “Carpet” execution highlights a range of carpet collections at various prices and maintained Bunnings’ team approach by showing shots of staff holding signs about the selection and ordering process.

The “Low Prices” ad outperformed on recognition, with respondents 43 percent more likely to recognise the “Low Prices” execution.

Both ads were above-average in interest compared with the norm for press ads.

Almost half (47%) of respondents found the Low Prices interesting versus 43 percent for the “Carpet” ad.

In terms of creative diagnostics, both ads were generally close to category norms, slightly lower on visual appeal and imagery, slightly higher on clarity of offer. Although the ads didn’t stand out on diagnostics, they performed well on Brand Equity and Action measures. Respondent comments indicate this is largely due to how the consistency of the Bunnings’ style makes the ads easy to recognise, and prompts readers to read them.


Brand Equity Impact

Both ads had a strong effect on the brand equity measures, and were significantly above the norm for newspaper ads on 1.) improving familiarity/understanding of the brand, 2.) being appropriate to the brand, and 3.) making the brand seem different to the competitors.

CB_Bunnings_Brand Equity

The “Carpet” ad was seen to be equally appropriate to the brand, and was superior at making the brand stronger at improving familiarity and understanding of the brand, and making it seem different to competitors.

Many respondents commented that they didn’t know that Bunnings offered a carpeting service. The “Low Prices” ad told them something familiar which reinforced/lifted brand equity. Telling them something new about Bunnings in the “Carpet” ad was more effective in enhancing brand equity.

Strategic RoleMap

Six strategic advertising roles of newspapers have been validated both qualitatively and quantitatively by The Newspaper Works, resulting in the creation of RoleMap. For more information on this map, click here


Both ads were above the norm in providing Information (“gives me more information about the brand”), prompting Reappraisal (“encourages me to think differently about the brand”), and building Affinity (“gives me a good feeling about the brand”. The last measure was overwhelmingly effective, with both executions twice as effective as the norm.

The “Carpet” ad was above-average in terms of Call to Action (“gives me a reason to buy, use or find out more about the brand”) and Extension (“reminds me of the TV advertising for the brand”).

The “Low Prices” ad did a more effective job of leveraging the imagery and content from the TV advertising, a factor that has consistently been shown to lead to stronger outcomes. Respondents were more likely to respond to this ad on five out of eight measures, and it was above-average on seven out of eight measures.


Newspapers are recognised as an effective medium for delivering a Call to Action. ActionMap, another proprietary newspaper metric, expands on this strategic role to provide an understanding of the types of action a newspaper ad inspires. For more information on ActionMap, click here.


The “Low Prices” ad scored above the norm on most measures. Respondents were 1.6 times more likely to search online for more information, 2.2 times as likely to visit the store, and 2.7 times more likely to buy from Bunnings.

This execution also did strongly on longer-term measures. Respondents were more likely to keep or try to remember the ad as well as discuss the ad either with others or on social media.

The “Carpet” ad was above the norm, if less effective on most measures. It excelled in prompting respondents to ring for more information.

On longer-term measures, respondents were twice as likely to keep the ad and three times more likely to try to remember it than the industry average. This might correlate with the fact fewer people are actively looking to replace carpet at any given time.


The “Low Prices” ad shows how a consistent approach pays off in terms of brand-equity and action metrics.

Using the elements from previous newspaper and TV ads makes the ad work faster, resulting in immediate enquiry, store traffic and sales.

The “Carpet” ad demonstrates the power of introducing a new product to an established brand. Bunnings may be a hardware store but puts a diverse range of offerings under that label.

Thanks to the creative execution, readers had no trouble including carpets as part of the mix.


Low Prices

It caught my eye as it contained some products that I would potentially be interested in buying, and gave the prices which were good prices.

The adverts are always the same style and you get used to seeing them. I always look through them to see if there is something that I need.

Bunnings have made their ads distinctive by always using sketch drawings instead of all pictures and most people know this.


Was not aware that Bunnings did carpet. I don’t really need carpet but they might have other flooring I am interested in.

Well set out, uncluttered and to the point.

Different because most hardware stores don’t sell carpet… or arrange to have it fitted.

This ad displays Bunning’s flexibility of what they offer. Because it’s an offer for “any size for a price” this becomes attractive to consumers.



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