Virgin Media has a hoot with new ad campaign

3rd October 2014

  • Animal archetypes celebrate the different ways people watch TV
  • Range of Box Sets and movies available with Big Kahuna Movies bundle showcased

Virgin Media is taking a walk on the wild side for its latest ad campaign with the introduction of new characters – Ed the Sofa Bear and Ally the Night Owl – who love to watch TV in their own way.

The ads champion the vast number of Box Sets and movies available to Virgin Media customers through Virgin Movies, Sky Movies and Netflix. First airing on primetime ITV during X Factor on Saturday, 4th October, the campaign demonstrates the different ways customers watch their favourite content through animal archetypes.

In the first ad, called ‘Sofa Bear’, a brown bear called Ed lays stretched out on a sofa watching The Wolf of Wall Street while his human housemate tidies up around him. A voiceover explains Sofa Bears like Ed often hibernate in front of the TV for entire weekends, which is why they go for Virgin Media and its huge library of movies and Box Sets. Ed’s housemate momentarily steps in front of the TV so Ed cranes his head to get a better view. When the housemate plugs in the vacuum it proves too much of a disturbance for Ed, who roars irritably.

In the second ad, called ‘Night Owl’, Ally the barn owl perches on an armchair in a living room lit only by the flickering light from the TV. The voiceover explains Night Owls like Ally are identifiable by their frequent call up the stairs of ‘Just one more episode’ and love Virgin Media for its immense range of movies and Box Sets that keep them on the edge of their seat. When Ally is finally persuaded to go to bed, she can’t resist sitting up to watch yet another episode of Orange Is the New Black on a tablet with her headphones on while her human partner is sound asleep next to her.

While Ed and Ally front the TV ads, other animal characters will feature across the campaign, which will also run in cinema, display, online search, social media and Video on Demand,. Each character represents a different TV-watching archetype, helping demonstrate the flexibility of Virgin Media’s comprehensive entertainment service.

The other characters are:

  • Sue the Content Squirreler (squirrel): Sue is effortlessly organised and likes to record her favourite shows so they’re ready on her set-top box whenever she wants them.
  • Sam the Remote Controller (hippo): It’s nigh-on impossible to wrestle the remote from young Sam, who loves watching kids shows and movies
  • Jamie the Screen-Juggler (orangutan): Jamie loves sport and keeping up with his favourite shows and is often seen doing four things at once across different screens

Richard Larcombe, Director of Brand and Marketing at Virgin Media, said: “From Breaking Bad to The Lego Movie, we’ve got it on Virgin Media. Customers love searching the vast range of shows, Box Sets and films whether they’re at home or on the go. In our new campaign, we want to celebrate the fact that people watch their favourite entertainment in their own way – and whether they’re a Sofa Bear, a Night Owl or some other species, Virgin Media is the perfect habitat for all their TV needs.”

Virgin Media customers can get Sky Movies and access to Virgin Movies from £50 a month, now with Netflix included for six months, on the ‘Big Kahuna Movies’ bundle1. This market-beating bundle also makes the most of the unrivalled power of Virgin Media’s network by boasting 152Mb broadband, twice as fast as any other service of scale. It also includes the highly acclaimed TiVo® with over 230 TV channels with over 40 in HD, such as every BT Sport channel, more channels on the go than any other provider, as well as a home phone and service and repairs included at no extra cost.

Virgin Media’s Big Bundles have transformed the way in which home communications and entertainment services can be bought, offering unprecedented flexibility and value to consumers. Details of the full range of Virgin Media Big Bundles can be found here:

The ad campaign was created by BBH with media planning handled by Fifty6.

Notes to editors

1 Virgin Media’s Big Kahuna Movies bundle is currently available on an 18 month contract from £50 for the first 12 months, then from £63.50 thereafter, now with Netflix included for six months.

The creative leads for the campaign are as follows:

Director: Johnny Burns and Pier Van Tijn, Big Red Button

Creative director: Tom Drew and Uche Ezugwu, BBH

Copywriter: Tom Drew, BBH

Art director: Uche Ezugwu, BBH

Production company: Moxie Pictures

About Virgin Media

Virgin Media offers four multi award-winning services across the UK and Ireland: broadband, TV, mobile phone and landline.

The company’s dedicated, ultrafast network delivers the fastest widely available broadband speeds to homes and businesses. And we’re expanding this through our £3bn Project Lightning programme, which will reach 17 million premises.

Our interactive TV service brings live programmes, thousands of hours of on-demand programming and the best apps and games in a set-top box, as well as on-the-go for tablets and smartphones.

We launched the world’s first virtual mobile network, offering fantastic value and services to customers. We are also one of the largest fixed-line home phone providers in the UK and Ireland.

Through Virgin Media Business we support entrepreneurs, businesses and the public sector, delivering the fastest widely available broadband speeds and tailor-made services.

Virgin Media is part of Liberty Global, the world’s largest international cable company. Together Virgin Media and Liberty Global serve 27 million customers across 14 countries.

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