Campaign title: Exhibition Stockholm – “The world’s first photo competition and exhibition in augmented reality”

Client/Entering Company: Adobe Nordic

Company Name: Spotlight


As the smartphone camera has changed consumer behavior in photography, Adobe wants to engage an important new target group: ambitious smartphone photographers. The “Exhibition Stockholm” event aimed to strengthen the brand with this group, while also driving sales of image-editing tools for mobile cameras. This unique live event was centered on a web application platform that made use of both AI and AR. A solid measurement framework secured both the short-term need for input and term long-term need for evaluation.


Introduce Adobe to a New User Group

With its photo and video editing tools, such as Photoshop and Premiere Pro, Adobe enjoys a very strong position among professional and semi-professional creatives and photographers. The ever- more powerful cameras in today’s smartphones mean that Swedes now take more pictures than ever before. According to our initial survey, nine out of ten Swedes regularly use the camera on their phone to take pictures.

The assignment was to introduce the Adobe brand to this broad audience of hobby photographers and to build a wider brand awareness, in order to increase sales of the brand’s smartphone photo editing tools and Adobe Photography Plan CC.

Measurements were planned to mirror these multiple-level objectives, including strategic as well as tactical insights during the event. Strategic objectives included ensuring understanding how the event increased brand penetration in the new target group, while simultaneously building new insight on the target audience’s relationship with photography in general. A critical area for the measurement effort was also to assure the client’s marketing team that the “Exhibition Stockholm” concept – highly-creative and never previously executed anywhere else in the world – was on strategy and good for the brand.

Tactical insights included ensuring short-term feedback on how the event itself proceeded, as well as monitoring the effects of promotion and PR.


Simultaneously measuring short- and long-term effects in a branding event
Our strategy was to set up a range of measurements that simultaneously covered the long-term goals of the brand, for example building a relationship with a new important target group, while monitoring any short-term effects during the event itself. The obvious approach was a “Before+During+After” event solution, where the “Before” phase included research to identify new insights on the attitudes and behavior of the identified target group.

We opted to use the AMEC Integrated Framework as a model for all research activities, using a selection of in-house and external tools in order to cover the full range of relevant KPIs.
Reporting was adopted to this strategy, with a combination of near-daily updating by email or phone, and two or three major presentations at significant milestones during the project lifecycle.


The event
The event was the world’s first photo competition and exhibition in Augmented Reality: “Exhibition Stockholm”. Set in picturesque central Stockholm, and running throughout the 2017 summer holiday season, the objective was to attract both local and visiting smartphone-using photo enthusiasts. With their smartphone camera and an event-specific web app, participants competed to take the best picture at 54 secret locations in Stockholm, while being automatically advised by Adobe via AI on how to improve their photos. Participants uploaded their photos to the web app and the winners were selected by public vote. The best pictures were then displayed in an AR photo exhibition in a popular Stockholm park.

The promotion
“Exhibition Stockholm” was promoted in earned, shared and paid media through several activities:

  • Collaboration with influencers, who themselves participated in the photo competition
  • Previews for journalists who were also allowed to participate in the photo competition
  • Ads in social media
  • Media pitches, including press releases with facts about Swedish mobile photography, based on our survey

The original idea for the event was based on insights developed in-house, pointing at the worrying fact that a major portion of potential customers and users of Adobe products had no awareness of them or any relationship with the brand. As a first step, we decided to conduct a broad quantitative survey of the general population, exploring in greater detail smartphone users’ photo habits and attitudes, while pinpointing initial levels of brand and product awareness, usage etc.

Research consisted of 2,100 respondents in a national web survey in Sweden, conducted by TNS SIFO in two waves during the spring and autumn of 2017. Next, we established a set of measurements to monitor both traditional and social media outputs, using a combination of conventional media tracking tools and social media analytics. For long-term evaluation – but also tactical input – we focused significant attention on tracking the event participants, building several measurement capabilities into the “Exhibition Stockholm” web app. Finally, we followed up the branding and business outcomes post-event, using a combination of the second wave of the quantitative survey among the general population and sales data analysis.

Effectiveness of Assignment

Strategic and tactical insight on a new target group

Since a significant part of the multiple-role research was to generate strategic insights into an important new target group, the insights below supported the development of the event concept and execution itself, including the choice of location, communications targeting and – not least – ensuring the marketing team that “Exhibition Stockholm” was in fact a good idea…

Snapping Away – But not all happy…

  • 91 percent of Swedes regularly use their mobile phone camera
  • 60 percent only take pictures with their mobile phone camera
  • 45 percent never edit their pictures on their phone
  • 32 percent of Swedes want to become better at photo editing on mobile phones

Confirming previous knowledge, the pre-event survey showed that the smartphone camera dominates photography. And although we take more pictures than ever before, a large percentage is not happy with the results and wants to learn more about photo editing.

Pictures are for sharing

  • The most photo-intensive time is during holidays
  • Smartphone photography is centered around social media and sharing images
  • 33 percent of Swedes share more images on social media today than three years ago
  • We share most of the photos on Facebook (50 percent) and Instagram (40 percent)

The survey also showed that a powerful motivation behind taking and perfecting images with smartphones is social media.

Most Enjoyable Motifs in Social Media

  • 35 percent – Pictures of a natural environment
  • 23 percent – Pictures of attractions
  • 20 percent – Holiday pictures
  • 16 percent – Pictures of friends
  • 14 percent – Pictures of family (siblings, cousins, other family)
  • 11 percent – Photos of city environments
  • 10 percent – Pictures of sports or entertainment events/concerts

However, not all images shared on social media are enjoyed equally. The survey gave a good indication of what we like and don’t like.

Outputs and outcomes
Based on the measurement set-up described above, essentially modelled on the AMEC Integrated Evaluation Framework, we were able to track and evaluate the event at all important levels:

  • Hundreds of participants, thousands of images and 127,000 votes….
  • The activity attracted hundreds of participants, each spending on average about two hours, transporting themselves approximately ten kilometres and uploading thousands of photos.
  • The competition attracted 127,000 votes and received great attention in media and by influencers.

The campaign exceeded the set goals by a very good margin.

Media outputs
Photo and technology media published both articles and video reports about the competition, while news based on our press releases about Swedes’ habits and preferences in relation to mobile photography appeared in newspapers, industry press and on viral sites. The campaign was also noted in international press.

Media outputs of the campaign:

  • More than 14,000,000+ contacts in traditional media
  • More than 20,000,000+ impressions in traditional media
  • More than 2,000,000+ social media contacts

Brand & business outcomes
All the goals for branding and business growth were exceeded by a significant margin*

Improvements in KPIs included:

  • Increased awareness of Adobe’s photo editing tool Lightroom for mobile (Adobe’s mobile photo-editing app) with 5 percent points
  • Increased brand awareness of Adobe by 15 percent points
  • Increased sales of Adobe Photography Plan CC by 20 percent points

Given the well-documented and excellent outcomes of this unique and highly creative event in Stockholm, Adobe is currently considering replicating the event in several other locations globally.


Highlights from “Exhibition Stockholm” – The World’s First Photo Competition and Exhibition in Augmented Reality can be viewed via our video.

*  Unfortunately we are not at liberty to disclose absolute numbers due to business confidentiality issues. We hope the selected KPIs will suffice to create an overall understanding of the project and its overall impact