Case studies

Options Hot Chocolate & Absolute Radio

A successful campaign involving sponsorship in a relevant environment and tactical promotional activity to drive engagement.

The challenge

Options, the UK’s number one low calorie hot chocolate brand wanted to promote their guilt free ‘chocolate treat’ without any heavy calorie penalty. Their brand was focused around their 'Free Your Chocolate Desire’ messaging, which targeted calorie conscious women who could enjoy the chocolate to the full without having to worry about the calories.

Our Approach

Insight had shown us that Options’ sales increased in cold weather and this fact coupled with January’s traditional focus on dieting and healthy eating made the start of the year the perfect time to promote their brand. Our campaign therefore began in January and was built around an association with cold weather.

The Idea

Options Hot Chocolate sponsored Absolute Radio’s weather forecast for 7 weeks from the start of the year. Alongside this we ran a Spotlight promotion for 3 weeks whereby listeners could win a ‘warming’ trip to Dubai.


The sponsorship of weather allowed Options to highlight their brand messages on rotation across key dayparts. We also used different flavours for different weather. i.e. Belgian chocolate when it was cold, Mint chocolate when it was frosty/snow, Orange chocolate for fog etc. 

The on air promotion provided engagement with our listeners, and combined with directional media and newsletter presence drove listeners online to a bespoke Options competition page to win.

In addition we conducted sampling throughout London giving out 30,000 products across 2 days and promoting the Dubai promotion on air. Social media further highlighted this.



of listeners said that they were ‘very likely to try Options hot chocolate compared with 3% at the start


of listeners said that, “the brand seems more appealing’ following the on air partnership.


of listeners said that, “the points made were relevant to me” and 68% said that the information from the campaign, “contained new information about the brand.”

The Options sponsorship of Absolute Radio’s weather forecast will further build on the Options cold weather association and Absolute Radio’s core demographic is an ideal match for the Options consumer.

Emily RichBusiness Director, Maxus