Friends Reunited, the reunion website, is attempting to broaden its appeal to older users with a £7m advertising push that breaks this week.
The website, which was bought by ITV for £175m at the end of 2005, is looking to reposition itself as a more mature and upmarket brand. The new strategy will launch with a TV ad, created by integrated agency Kitcatt Nohr Alexander Shaw.
The new campaign marks a shift in strategy for the brand, which has previously focused on reuniting old school friends but will now highlight its other services, such as its database of universities, work places and local contacts. The campaign will run throughout the first quarter of the year with other activity planned later.
The new execution contrasts the challenges of communication in the animal kingdom with the ease in which people can find old friends online with the Friends Reunited website.
It features whales trying to stay in touch as they migrate across the ocean and also highlights the fact that searching on Friends Reunited is free with the line “You’ll never know unless you go”.
The brand is launching new services in the jobs, dating and genealogy sectors. Head of Friends Reunited Jon Clark says/ “Our brand awareness is very high but there is still a sizeable number of people who just use the site for their secondary school. It’s quite hard to do ads for websites with a direct response element without them being tacky but we wanted a more mature and sophisticated campaign.”