Photo Credit: http://www.campaignlive.co.uk
How best to showcase the unstoppable power of broadband? Virgin Media and VCCP London take their advertising creative to new heights (literally), with their latest bold, playful campaign.
A Nation of Animal Lovers
Some of the most iconic ads ever feature animals – we’re thinking of the heart-warming 1988 Real Fire ‘Dog, Cat and Mouse’ ad:
And of course the campaign which won all of the UK’s most prestigious advertising awards, including TV commercial of the Year at the British Television Advertising Awards, Cadbury’s ‘Gorilla’:
The Drum ranked it at No. 14 in its World’s Best Ads Ever roundup in 2022 – it was an instant hit, the brand’s sales shot up 10% and all-important brand perception increased by 20%.
And more recently, there was Wieden + Kennedy’s brilliant ‘Dancing Pony’ for Three Mobile, accompanied by Fleetwood Mac.
So, creatures behaving in quirky ways are pretty much guaranteed to be a hit with animal-loving UK audiences.
Capitalising on this, Virgin Media’s WiFi ads are bringing us a variety of animals living their best lives in a range of fun, surprising ways. They kick-started the brand’s ‘To Better and Beyond’ campaign in October last year, with ‘Why walk when you can ride?’ Starring a Highland cow who breaks away from the herd to take to the road and embark on an adventure on a Triumph Bonneville motorbike, this features the inspired addition of Patrick Swayze’s ‘She’s Like the Wind’ as the soundtrack.
The Virgin Media x Netflix version, culminating in our Highland heroine speeding along accompanied by masked characters from Money Heist, is a particular joy:
Find out more about the VFX used by Georgios Kyparissous to create the ad in this behind the scenes explainer:
Climb Ev’ry Mountain
So, how have Virgin Media’s agency, VCCP London, tackled the next phase of the campaign? Our inspiring hero this time is an intrepid goat.
Opening on a herd of goats stuck on a remote mountainside and stumbling dramatically, the wheels of a hang glider come into view as the strains of another 80s classic, John Parr’s ‘St Elmo’s Fire’ kick in. The glider gathers speed and a goat is revealed as its pilot, soaring into the skies. Yes indeed, ‘why stumble when you can soar?’
As with the previous ad, VCCP London collaborated with Emmy and BAFTA award-winners Untold Studios to create the gutsy mountain goats in CGI. The spot was directed by Sam Brown of Rogue Films, who’s directed everything from a McDonald’s McNuggets ad to Adele’s ‘Oh My God’ video.
VCCP London deputy executive creative director David Masterman revealed the thinking behind the ad: ‘Picking up from where our Highland Cow left off, we wanted to dramatise the unstoppable power of Virgin Media’s broadband with the story of a goat who leaves his stumbling herd behind to take to the skies.’
Virgin Media O2 marketing director Simon Valcarcel added, ‘Our latest campaign highlights the truly unstoppable spirit of the Virgin Media brand and our ambitions to provide our customers with the very best connectivity to help them reach new heights. Through our market-leading WiFi Guarantee, we want our customers to truly feel like they can do anything in life – like our hang-gliding goat.’
With the formula of a lovable farm animal, a potentially dangerous means of transport and a classic 80s tune, the only question is what combination Virgin Media will use next? We can definitely see the potential of a donkey’s fabulously furry ears being blown around by a thrilling breeze, so we’re eagerly awaiting the next phase.
For more brilliantly quirky ads – including the Hare and the Tortoise, Lion Man and some very hench bears – dive into our roundup of IKEA’s ‘Wonderful Everyday’ campaigns and explore The Edit for our monthly roundups of the best ad creatives.
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