Aldi’s self-aware social mimics the 'Legendary' Vogue front cover

Aldi’s self-aware social mimics the 'Legendary' Vogue front cover

Aldi's recent playful stunt, featuring a parody Vogue magazine cover, inspired us to deep dive into its wider social media and viral efforts.

Just when you thought you were over celebrity-heavy campaigns, British Vogue editor-in-chief Edward Enninful dropped his farewell issue on our cynical posteriors, reducing us once again to fawning fanfolk.

The elegance, the subtle sense of drama the… ooh, there’s the lady from that Netflix chess show.

Just when you think you’ve seen it all, you realise some formulas never get old, which is just as well really for the creative industry, because being ‘impactful’ needn’t always mean being high effort.

Gathering 40 of the most influential women in show business in one place is not without its challenges. At other times, however, a cheeky cut-and-paste Photoshop job will do the trick, as budget supermarket chain Aldi proved with its timely Vogue sendup.

The mockup cover is a witty twist on the fashion magazine's legendary cover, with the supermarket dubbing its version ’Rogue’: showcasing its popular products instead of iconic figures.

It’s a reminder that being on brand is what matters. 

And, while Vogue’s impossibly perfect effort hits the mark, so too did Aldi’s slightly more ‘phoned in’ offering. The stealth campaign worked because the supermarket knows its place: cheap but surprisingly decent, and home to a few slightly too familiar big brand lookalike products.

Aldi wisely chooses to embrace the inevitable creative compromises that allow it to pass on the difference to customer wallets.

A look back

Aldi’s gift for self aware creative is shown in a few of its recent efforts:

Kevin the Carrot Christmas Ads: Aldi’s beloved character, Kevin the Carrot, has become a festive sensation. According to market research by System1, Aldi’s Christmas adverts featuring Kevin were the most effective among 24 tested ads.

‘Like Brands, Only Cheaper’: Aldi’s long-running campaign emphasises that its products are comparable to well-known brands but at a lower price. This witty and straightforward message resonated with consumers, making it one of the standout campaigns of the decade.

Social strategy

Aldi’s Vogue parody may be low effort, but its social media strategy is deceptively sophisticated. 

Aldi’s tone of voice personifies its brand, connecting with customers on a personal level, using a friendly and relatable tone to give a sense of familiarity and warmth.

Like with the Vogue cover, the brand is keen to jump on news items for clout. For example, when Marks & Spencer initiated legal proceedings over the Cuthbert the Caterpillar cake, Aldi responded with the #FreeCuthbert campaign, driving social media engagement up by a staggering 17,900%.

Aldi, by breaking the mould of being a serious grocery brand, has transformed its online presence into a fun and interactive space. Over the past few years, Aldi’s combined impressions on social media have skyrocketed from 2.6 million in 2019 to more than 764 million impressions by 2022, totalling almost 2 billion across three years of activity. Indeed, according to YouGov, Aldi ranks as the UK’s most famous (99%) and most popular (80%) supermarket.

Never underestimate the power of a good bit of reactive social.

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