Hungry Horse More Jingle More Bells

Spreading festive cheer and creating meaningful connections with stay-at-home customers!

In response to the unprecedented events of 2020, Greene King's Hungry Horse brand turned to an unlikely Christmas saviour – enter Belinda the Brussels Sprout!

Last-minute changes

After UK hospitality establishments were forced to close their doors ahead of Christmas 2020, many of their marketing campaigns also went out the window. Hungry Horse was no different.

When the lockdowns were finally announced, the original plan needed to change. Instead of the large-scale, cross-channel ‘More Jingle More Bells’ Christmas campaign, the team had to make tough decisions on how to approach their last quarter.

Game on!

Having created games for previous campaigns, the digital team understood their value in engaging customers and creating conversations. They decided that a game was the way forward. As a main CTA and integral part of the new plan, it was believed that as a tool it could raise spirits, offer a little entertainment, and provide a great way to connect with a customer base now staying safe at home.

They chose Peek & Poke as their trusted partner to deliver the goods. Having worked with the team before, they knew that Peek & Poke would be a safe pair of hands to meet the deadline while bringing a new character to life.

I wouldn't want to risk a project like this with anyone else. The stakes were high and it required something special to raise awareness for the Christmas period ahead.

Mark Haslam, Digital Designer, Greene King

Belinda the Brave

One of the stand-out ingredients for a Hungry Horse Christmas Dinner is a battered Brussels sprout. The team decided that this fusion should be one of the key elements of the game, and so the character Belinda the Brussels Sprout was born!

Having reviewed the selection of white-label games offered by Peek & Poke, the Christmas Hopper game was chosen as the perfect base to bring Belinda to life. The game was given the customisation treatment in line with the brand and colours and soon looked like a bespoke Hungry Horse game.

We were introducing a new character that would be on our comms and star in the game, which needed the additional magic from the creative team at Peek and Poke to bring it to life.

Mark Haslam, Digital Designer, Greene King

Points mean prizes!

With a prize structure that offered multiple ways to win, the game motivated people to play and engage regularly as an incentive to spend their vouchers at their local restaurant once restrictions were lifted.

The giveaways included vouchers for top spots on the leaderboard, as well as a free prize draw of all scores for the chance to win weekly £50 vouchers and even Hungry Horse meals for a year!

Organic for the win

With the original campaign having to be stripped back and all paid promotion cancelled, the success of ‘More Jingle More Bells’ had to rely solely on organic traffic. To say that the game was played over half a million times, we reckon the organic approach through email and social media turned out to be a resounding success!

In addition to a landing page on the website (47.5k visits) and email to subscribers (generating 38,650 visits), the game also created a real buzz on social media where organic posts went out to the Hungry Horse Facebook account with nearly 200,000 followers.

The team monitored, engaged with, and replied to comments throughout the campaign. By establishing real connections between brand and audience, they managed to drive 28,406 visits through social media – not to mention multiple positive comments! 👇

The final product exceeded our expectations. Our branding tied in so well with the game and the character design ended up being incredible. The game surpassed our expectations as it was shared without the spend and how it should be – organically!

Mark Haslam, Digital Designer, Greene King


Over half a million gameplays

46,121 players

Avg. engagement time of over 15 minutes per player