Marketing News Feature


The Dulux Collection. From the runways of Paris? 
No, the aisles of a Dulux Paints store.

TORONTO: What if you were to take the cues and codes of the high fashion industry and apply them to something as utilitarian as house paint? The answer to that question can be found through yet another innovative exercise in social marketing from the digitally savvy folks at Toronto’s Reason Partners Inc.

This time they’re helping their Dulux client leverage today’s huge trend in splatter paint fashion through an integrated online campaign called The Dulux Collection, which showcases the paint company’s fall-winter palette on designer-style clothing rather than on walls. With video of striking runway models sporting paint-splattered attire, online print ads that look like something from Vogue Magazine, and an app that invites online participants to create their own paint-splashed t-shirts, the marketing brings a refreshing new look to the product category.

Dulux Paint Splatter CommercialDulux’s stylish online video for social media.

“Let’s face it,” says Reason Partner’s President Jeff Plowman, “in the chatty world of social media, you’re not likely to get people talking excitedly about house paint and colour samples from the local hardware store. But if you take the paint and splatter it on clothes you might expect to see in a colourful Yves Saint Laurent or Alexander McQueen runway collection, you create a cultural touch point that’s engaging, entertaining and relevant to the brand thanks to the whole colour aesthetic.”

Add to that interactive features that encourage consumers to design and share their own paint-splattered fashions – and perhaps channel their inner Jackson Pollock – and you’ve got the stuff that drives conversation, awareness and sales, Plowman says, adding that the mix of campaign elements is fully integrated on Facebook with a big push behind social seeding.

Dulux Paint Splatter AplicationCool app for splatter paint T-shirt design.

Dulux Paint On Clothes Facebook ads

Dulux’s palette on clothes, not walls.

“I think the learning curve for social marketing has made some things pretty clear to this point,” says Dulux Brand Manager Martin Tustin-Fuchs. “In relation to Facebook, we’ve got to engage consumers imaginatively by staying on top of the trends and playing off pop culture. It’s what interests people. It’s what they talk about. It’s what they like to share with others. Moreover, we’ve got to show appreciation to customers and potential customers through tangible offers - discounts, contests, what have you – because the old days of one-way communication are fast fading.”

He adds it’s not the first time his professional circle has worked with Reason Partners in social marketing to shake up the paint category. Not so long ago C.I.L. Paints (associated with Dulux) made news with a famously funny, award-winning integrated campaign titled “Paint Chip Names for Men.” The campaign highlighted a Facebook app that allowed men to swap traditionally feminine names for paint colors with male-oriented names. Feminine names such as “crystal glitter” and “ballerina slipper” were supplanted with masculine names running from "cleavage" and "duct tape," to “dark beer” and “bacon.” Users could then vote for their favorite new paint chip names. Not surprisingly, the campaign took Facebook by storm.

CIL Paint Chips For Men
“Dark Beer” amung colours in CIL Paint Chip Campaign for men.

In Tustin-Fuchs view, it’s the good fit between Dulux and Reason Partners that makes for clever, innovative work.

“As a relatively small shop, Reason Partners has strengths over bigger agencies; namely, the agency is nimble and they are entrepreneurial in their approach to problem solving. Their ability to quickly respond to our needs at Dulux – thanks in large part to our direct access to agency principals – makes for top level service and a sharp creative edge. All told, our working relationship is very efficient. And efficiency is time. And time is money.”

Additional creative credits for the campaign go to film director George Simhoni, of Westside Studio, still photographer Nikki Ormerod, and fashion designer Marie-Eve Tremblay. Engagement Labs assisted with social seeding while Starnix helped build the app. Toronto Tees is providing the App-designed T-shirts.


Reason Partners Inc. is a Toronto-based agency providing digital and traditional advertising and design expertise celebrated the world over. More than 500 international and national awards for effectiveness and creativity in advertising attest to the agency’s marketing savvy, branding expertise, and dedication to business results. Services encompass everything from strategy, brand ID, and integrated multi-media, to social marketing, digital applications, and new product and IP development.


Jeff Plowman
Reason Partners Inc.
416 929 9190 x 238