Freeview Balloon Campaign Floats Skywards

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Digital Terrestrial Television (DTT) service Freeview has long been a thorn in the side of PayTV platform BSkyB, offering around 10 million consumers a wide range of TV channels for little more than the price of the kit.

Perhaps that’s why its new TV commercial (created by Leo Burnett) is based around balloons. At the start of the ad, a man grabs hold of a single balloon with the word Dave on the side. By the end, the sky is filled with balloons, each bearing the name of a channel or service that consumers can get for free via the DTT service.

The TV ad, which launched during I’m A Celebrity on November 18, is spearheading an £18m marketing drive. What makes it interesting is that it is the first Freeview campaign in recent years to focus on brand-building as opposed to straightforward product promotions. Earlier this year, for example, the focus was on HD. Prior to that it was PVR Freeview+.

The decision to launch a brand-based campaign is not before time, because there’s a sense that many consumers still don’t quite understand the Freeview offering. There’s a also a perception that it is more akin to a utility than a consumer-facing entertainment brand.

Marketing communications director Guy North is hoping that the new campaign will address such issues.

Commenting on the campaign, he said: "The Freeview brand represents everything that television should be about today - quality television programmes for people to enjoy, in the format they want, without the worry of how much it's going to cost them each month. The campaign will specifically target those people who may be considering an alternative to pay television to take a look at what's available on Freeview and how to make the most of it with Freeview+ and Freeview HD”.