“Just Look for UL” - Safety at Home Holidays (MSLGROUP Americas) | MMA Global

“Just Look for UL” - Safety at Home Holidays (MSLGROUP Americas)

March 25, 2009

Brand: Underwriters Laboratories
Campaign: “Just Look for UL” - Safety at Home Holidays
Agency: MSLGROUP Americas
Vendor: SnapTell
Region: United States

Underwriters Laboratories (UL) has earned a reputation among manufacturers as a global leader in product safety standards development, testing and certification. Yet, despite its strong B2B reputation, UL lacked high awareness among the broader U.S. consumer population. While baby boomers and their elders were familiar with the iconic UL Mark – a seal of approval - younger generations had little to no awareness of UL and didn’t understand its role in helping safeguard their homes.

UL needed to make the UL Mark relevant to consumers using multiple media channels. Specifically, UL’s objectives were to:

  • Generate awareness and understanding among our target of UL and its commitment to safety
  • Create demand and a new generation of consumers who only purchase products with the UL Mark
  • Start a “safety movement” by encouraging a new generation of mothers to spread the UL message
  • Leverage a community of mobile consumers who could participate by finding the UL Mark in a wide variety of places


To meet these objectives and achieve extraordinary results for UL, MSLGROUP Americas created an engaging digital program rooted in the seemingly simple task of finding and recognizing the UL Mark. Mobile sweepstakes entry was the centerpiece of the creative idea and execution plan, allowing participants the flexibility of finding and submitting the UL Mark virtually wherever and whenever they saw it. Through the “Just Look for UL Sweepstakes,” consumers were encouraged to enter the contest by submitting camera phone photos of products bearing the UL Mark to [email protected], or the 707070 short code. They could also enter by completing an online form at www.safetyathome.com, the micro-site built by MSLGROUP Americas. For five weeks, consumers looked for the UL Mark in their homes, in stores, in media outlets and public events, and sent images of the UL Mark for a chance to win daily digital camera give-aways and a grand prize of $10,000 in UL certified products.

As part of an integrated approach, MSLGROUP Americas created online banner ads touting the sweepstakes, which clicked through to the entry page on Safetyathome.com. We also developed supporting print ads and an online tutorial that educated consumers on exactly how to submit their entries via camera phone. Mobile image recognition provider SnapTell helped enable the mobile sweepstakes entry.

UL realized that in order to demonstrate the breadth of home electrical products that are UL certified, consumers must first learn how and where to find the UL Mark. To achieve the campaign objectives, UL engaged influencers by integrating many different online and offline platforms:

  • Magazine business response cards (BRC’s)
  • Flash animation video
  • Online Influencer outreach
  • Online banners including targeted Facebook ads
  • Holiday/seasonal events

The following components made the campaign possible:

  • The MSLGROUP Americas designed ads were placed in late November issues of People and OK! These ads all included the BRC’s that became one of the main mobile contest drivers







  • The image-recognition technology from SnapTell gave the campaign a major wow factor, with a match rate of more than 98.5% for the UL Mark which appears on a wide range of electrical products in a number of sizes, colors and other variations. The technology allowed MSLGROUP Americas to offer customized responses to mobile entries sent via mobile email as opposed to MMS, both of which confirmed the entry and drove consumers to the microsite for more safety related content.










  • Online, MSLGROUP Americas created a flash-based animation that became the signature tutorial of the Safetyathome.com microsite. It took the visitor through each step of submitting a mobile entry to limit the number of failed camera phone entries.



















The uniqueness of the UL Mark and the sheer number of places it appears made this a compelling consumer campaign. The variety of entries received spanned from kitchen appliance boxes to office supplies to living room decorations to the insert cards from the magazine ads. The “hunt“ for the UL Mark became the driver that had some consumers entering multiple times with different photos of the UL Mark. Fans were connected and engaged as they regularly searched for the UL Mark at work, at home and on the go.

Out of the remarkable 85,400 combined online and mobile entries, 11 percent of all unique sweepstakes entries were submitted via camera phone.

The results of the “Just Look for UL” mobile program exceeded expectations and created successful consumer awareness of UL and the UL Mark. By leveraging mobile applications, UL was able to effectively connect with its target consumer and extend the safety movement to the hands of new mothers.