How a data-led approach let BT Sport spread its message further

BT used AI to get to the heart of the nation’s conversation about football.

BT Sport’s ‘Unscripted’ campaign provided a unique story to tell: a 60-page script for the entire football season, written by artificial intelligence (AI) based on data.

Getting the story told as widely as possible was the objective, so that BT could fight back against rivals with bigger budgets, as well as against illegal streaming sites.

BT Sport and agency Wunderman Thompson used sports data from Opta, with analysis from Google Cloud and Squawka, to create the script. It was then disseminated via pundits, players, influencers and journalists, with a key objective: to put BT Sport at the heart of the national conversation about football in every pub, social media chat and talk radio session.

The conversation took off before the brand spent a penny on paid media, after word was spread by sports PR agency Pitch. Before the out-of-home section of the campaign went live it had already gained £1.7m of traditional earned media, with 128 pieces of organic coverage, 2.3 million print circulation, 5.6 million online impressions and 2.1 engagements.

This reach led BT Sport to take home the prize for PR and storytelling at the 2020 Marketing Week Masters. As well as being impressed by the way that the campaign caused a buzz of conversation, the judges were surprised by how low-cost the activity was.

“I think this epitomises challenger mindset thinking,” said one judge. The campaign also won the Masters awards for data-driven marketing, best use of a small budget and sports, gaming and entertainment.



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