O2 takes inspiration from Alice in Wonderland in ‘live experiences’ push

O2’s latest campaign sees the brand’s focus move to live experiences as it says catchup TV can never substitute experiencing something in the moment.

O2 says it wants to give customers more ways to enjoy their phones and get them to more live events, as it introduces its new campaign ‘Follow the rabbit’.

The ad, which was created with agency VCCP, is inspired by Alice in Wonderland and asks its audience whether they want to sit and watch something on catchup or follow a blue rabbit “through the hole” to a world of “wonder and awe”, or in O2’s case a series of live gigs and events.

“We want to give our customers a bit more of what they want and love and more ways to enjoy their phones. We don’t believe there is a substitute for live experiences,” Nina Bibby, CMO at O2, tells Marketing Week.

She continues: “We’re taught to catchup or to binge but we want to bring the experience to life. Why don’t you just go out and experience it?”

Bibby says the the blue rabbit is there to entice customers and will be pushed out through various channels including outdoor, VOD and through social with the hashtag #FollowTheRabbit.

The campaign is a continuation of the company’s ‘More for you’ marketing platform, which aimed to give its customers more for their money in regards to connectivity and confidence and now through live experiences.

READ MORE: Nina Bibby, O2 – To compete in this frantic digital world, add genuine value

The company introduced the rabbit last week at the BRIT awards and the England v Italy rugby match at Twickenham through online teasers, urging attendees at the events to share their best live pictures with the hashtag. The ad officially goes live tonight (2 March), during Emmerdale.

The campaign will use experiential in a bid to excite customers. Giant rabbits will be hidden in secret locations nationwide from Friday and O2 customers can win unlimited access to O2 venues for the year if they find the rabbit and share a picture of themselves with it and the hashtag.

We’re taught to catchup or to binge but we want to bring the experience to life. Why don’t you just go out and experience it?

Nina Bibby, O2

O2 will be “dialing up” its focus on digital through programmatic video, targeting by genre of live experience and partnering with a range of influencers. It is also the first time the company has used a Snapchat lens and geo-targeted filters to push its brand and give customers the opportunity to win experiences.

In regards to measuring the campaign’s success, Bibby says more should be done to develop measurement and metrics, as the digital ad industry continues to grow. Though she could not comment on specific relationships with Facebook or Google, she says it is always O2’s upmost concern to measure full spend and it is “disappointing” where this cannot be done.

“Digital continues to take more and more advertising media spend and therefore I would say as a medium it needs to continue to develop its measurement and metrics to ensure it is able to demonstate the value to advertisers,” Bibby comments.

READ MORE: How O2 set up a marketing effectiveness team

She says now is the right time to introduce a new campaign, having recently renewed its partnership of 10 years with AEG, for naming rights of The O2 arena in London

“The renewal of the contract for the world’s most successful entertainment venue means it is the right time to really remind and inspire our customers about the fantastic experience that comes with live,” she explains.

The renewal of the contract will see O2 double the number of priority tickets customers get access to 48 hours before release. The company will also will look at how it can keep the experience going after the event, through connectivity at the venue.