Award-winning work for Tesco's blinkbox

Creative comms programme delivers 518% media coverage boost

Overview

Taylor Herring has been working as blinkbox’s retained PR and creative comms agency since January 2013.

Press office graft, viral videos, stunts, social media work and screening events have all captured public attention and helped contribute to a rise in unprompted brand consideration by 200%.

Stategic Overview

Movie and TV streaming is a fiercely competitive market. To stand out from the crowd in 2013 we had to be brave, bold and purposeful with our activity.

Rival services tend to build campaigns around generic promotional movie clips and images from the studios to promote their offering. So an opportunity arose for blinkbox to not only offer entertaining content, but promote it an entertaining way too.

Working closely with the in house team at every stage we hatched a plan to generate surprising, striking and sharable movie & TV related stories. We challenged ourselves to behave like ‘super fans’ when approaching creative ideas.

We decided to;

(1)  Reorganise ourselves so that we could react and generate content inspired by the daily movie and TV news agenda.

(2) Execute a series of high profile videos, stunts and events around key titles

(3) Build a sustained press office outreach programme to ensure we maintained awareness of our offering among key journalists and reviewers

The challenge for blinkbox was to achieve great results with a fraction of the budget that our competitors had to spend. 

And - most importantly - we had to be bold, brave and creative. We would also need to exploit the competitive advantage over rivals – the fact that blinkbox had more of the latest movies.

PR, social media and editorial channels would come together as one.

Our strategy was two-fold:

  1. Build a ‘story engine’ that allowed us to react to the movie and TV news agenda, daily.
  2. Execute a series of surprising high profile stunts and events around key titles

We would need a daily news meeting. First thing every morning (Mon-Fri) we would pull together a list of breaking news, pictures, and video clips that had emerged overnight from the U.S.

We were particularly interested in fan-generated content and emerging memes. The output would be then curated and shared via the blog, Facebook and Twitter.

We had a budget for bigger campaign pieces but also a weekly pot for ‘quick and dirty’ ideas.

QUICK WINS

The Gosline

The new approach paid off almost immediately with ‘The Gosline’.

When Ryan Gosling, arguably Hollywood’s biggest male star, said that he was to take a break from acting, we saw an opportunity.

Results: The stunt generated over 15 million Twitter impressions and 200 pieces of media coverage from the Daily Mail to Perez Hilton, with Gosling himself even being asked for his thoughts about it on the red carpet. The results, a 30% increase in direct visits to blinkbox.com, a 3% uplift in prompted brand awareness.

 Iron Man Balloon Man

Another piece of activity to come from the daily news call was an Iron Man stunt with a difference.

We’d heard about a movie fan who’d made a Buzz Lightyear costume from balloons.

We challenged him to do the same but for Iron Man.

And we asked him to record the endeavour.

Results: 700,00 views. The release received widespread attention from some of the biggest sites online - including MSN, AOL, Mashable, Yahoo, Digital Spy and The Poke.

full case study here

BIGGER CAMPAIGNS

We identified a series of ‘tent pole’ moments around key titles we could exploit.

The three key titles we focused on in 2013 were: Game of Thrones Season 3, Star Trek: Into Darkness and Alan Partridge: Alpha Papa.

For each title we’d sprinkle some blinkbox magic.

Game of Thrones

The third series of Game of Thrones came to blinkbox ahead rival services. Our quest was to create a disruptive piece of marketing that would strike a chord with diehard fans while tempting the uninitiated to check out the show.

Results: The activity generated 250+ pieces of credited coverage, 35 million Twitter impressions (five million of which were in the UK). blinkbox saw a 190% increase in referrals and a six-fold increase in new Facebook fans over the period compared to the previous month. On the day Game of Thrones Season 3 arrived on blinkbox the service saw a 632% year on year revenue hike and celebrated its biggest trading day in its history.

full case study here

For Season 4 we created a barking homage...

...and staged a themed wedding for two lucky fans

Star Trek Into Darkness

 To mark the arrival of the latest Star Trek instalment we worked with a top illusionist to ‘trick’ Westfield shoppers into thinking they were witnessing teleportation.

A combination of outreach and paid seeding (using YouTube In stream skippable ads) would drive awareness and engagement with our stunt.

 

 As well as 2 Million views the activity delivered 180 pieces of editorial, including Mashable and over two million UK Twitter impressions.

full case study here

 Alan Partridge: Alpha Papa

 We ‘hijacked’ the Norwich Christmas lights switch on with a spectacular display for fans.

 As the streets were illuminated with festive sparkle following the official switch on by TV presenter Jake Humphrey, a giant illuminated Alan Partridge beamed into life singing along to 80’s hit Cuddly Toy.

  

 

Results: The activity generated over 40 pieces of editorial including in the Mirror, Telegraph, Metro and BBC.  The video which quickly hit 500,000 UK Views was also used to support digital marketing efforts, with viewers retargeted with advertising to watch the movie on blinkbox.

PRESS OFFICE

Our first task was to raise awareness of blinkbox amongst key industry outlets from marketing and trade titles to nationals.

We worked intensively to sign-up over 60 industry journalists to the service and give them the chance to have a great blinkbox experience.

Moving forward we widened the net to consumer and lifestyle journalists, targeting key audience segments 

With relationships in place with media, we implemented a monthly mailer which acted as a blinkbox movie and TV guide.

The mailer included a round-up of the latest movie and TV releases on blinkbox as well as a ‘cultural catch-up’.

The cultural catch-up includes movies to watch that tie in with the seasonal calendar i.e. for our February mailer we focused on Valentine’s Day and included the movies that blossomed real-life on set romances.

The cultural catch-up section gives journalists/ customers the chance to explore the entire blinkbox library and not just log on every month for the latest releases.

Each month a new mailer of content is sent out to media houses and we have held/ continue to hold conversations with TV journalists to create watch on demand guides in their columns.  

Pushing for a watch on demand section is a task that has been met with some resilience from traditional TV writers in the media. So part of our job is to educate the media about watch on demand as well as target audiences.

All communication to press is focused around delivery of key messages.

With comparison features, we started from the beginning and collated every single review of other VOD services on the internet and went through each one and offered them the chance to also trial blinkbox and add it to their VOD comparison feature round-ups. A highlight from this activity was a glowing review of the service on The Gadget Show.

In addition to placing content we also make consistent noise around the latest trade news from blinkbox and ensure there is a steady flow of exclusive content deals in industry writers’  inboxes so they can see the service is gaining momentum and squaring up to its competitors.

SUMMARY

  • Mentions of blinkbox online in 2013 were up 370% year on year, with news stories mentioning the brand up 518%.
  • blinkbox saw a 450% increase in transactions from referral traffic in 2013.
  • A 941% increase in blog visits in December 2013 compared to May 2013.
  • Engaged Facebook users were up by 245% from the start of the year to the end of the year, retweets on Twitter by 131%, video views on YouTube by 745% and direct revenue from social media by 472%. (Jan-March 2013 v Nov 2013-Jan 2014).
  • Our focus on getting blinkbox content in movie and TV listings pages resulted in over 200 pieces of editorial.
  • blinkbox content is now included in six regular watch on demand guides including: Daily Mail, The Independent, Guardian Guide, Hey You Guys, Radio Times and Total Film
  • Creative PR activity captured public attention and helped contributed to a rise in unprompted brand consideration by 200%.
  • Whilst the digital streaming and download market increased 40% year on year in 2013, blinkbox outperformed the market.
  • Our work has been popular with key partners, the studios, who have expressed keen interest in working with blinkbox collaboratively in 2014.