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Case Study:
Pearson & Blue Rubicon


To launch Pearson’s new homework service Maths Made Easy, Opinion Matters created research for Blue Rubicon to explore parents’ understanding and confidence in their maths skills with junior school age children (5-11 years old). The resulting campaign aimed to deliver media coverage and raise awareness of the challenges faced by parents when helping their children with homework.


The strategy was grounded in the initial insight that it is more socially acceptable to say that you are bad at maths than you struggle to read well. This was to be explored through research, delivered by Opinion Matters and to lead Blue Rubicon to create a two-pronged strategy.

  • To create a compelling media story to be further developed by the support of brand ambassador Carol Vorderman.
  • To create an interactive online test for parents to assess their maths knowledge against that of their children.


Opinion Matters developed a timed survey app, ensuring it was enjoyable, intuitive and engaging, with an iFrame design enabling constant real time data capture. The questions used in the quiz were based on the maths curriculum for children (Years 4-7). The app allowed parents to see how many questions they could answer correctly and record a final score out of 10, reinforcing the key messages of the campaign.

By encouraging parents to test themselves, the app drove participation and was highly successful in using ‘gamification’ techniques to convert respondents into players. The simple iFrame design allowed media to embed the app on their pages. To aid viral distribution, Opinion Matters created a ‘button’ for those who completed the quiz to ‘Like’ or ‘Share’ the app on Facebook or Twitter respectively. The final score created a competitive element amongst respondents who could share links and compare their results with other people, ensuring the app was widely shared across social media channels. The result was a fun and engaging campaign that appealed to the target audience, engaged them in the subject matter and drove significant web traffic to Pearson.

Return on investment

Both the media coverage and completions of the maths app exceeded the client’s high expectations with 72 overall items of coverage and OTS 41,516,000. This included:

  • The Daily Telegraph, Daily Mail, Daily Mirror, Daily Star and Metro, ITV Daybreak, Sky News Sunrise and 5 News.
  • The app was seeded to online media owners including The Telegraph, Sky News, The Mirror, MSN, Financial Mail Women’s Forum and Female First, who all featured the app in their editorial content, driving significant traffic to the Pearson website.
  • Throughout the user journey participants were able to click through to the Maths Made Easy website. The app continues to receive new submissions and has recorded over 276,000 completions (July 2013) and more submissions coming in. Real-time data capture allowed continuous evaluation, helping Pearson to assess the target audience’s mathematical capabilities and potentially demonstrate where additional support may be required.
  • The opportunity to ‘share’ the app created a strong social media presence with 4600 people sharing the app with their friends and online conversations about Pearson and Maths trebling (July 2013).

The Maths Made Easy App was seeded to:

To learn more please click below to try the Maths Made Easy Quiz out for yourself.

How good is your maths