We were challenged with giving the multi-award nominated Hotels.com ‘skip ad’ a run for its money with part two of Captain Obvious’s All4 journey; tackling ad-blocking head on with innovation and humour.
Hotels.com Ad Blocker
The Big Idea
Hotels.com know that they have to be disruptive to stand out in a commoditised sector. The challenge was to portray a sense of humour, innovate and stand out from other travel brands. They knew this would help to drive performance metrics and the results speak for themselves.
Hotels.com are looking to make the brand famous, build awareness and position themselves as a unique brand in a congested sector. After the multi-award nominated ‘skip ad’, Hotels.com wanted to utilise All4 and Innovid technology to launch the next chapter in the Captain Obvious story.
We again used humour and innovation to challenge technical advancements that are detrimental to our industry. Ad blocking is a threat to numerous publishers who curate a diverse range of content to engage, educate and entertain the nation.
We were tasked with creating a new interactive VOD campaign to rival the MediaWeek shortlisted ‘skip ad’. This was no mean feat but we used our creative approach PL4Y and had the infamous Hotels brand ambassador, Captain Obvious was at our disposal, which gave us a head start.
A decade ago, the premise of blocking ads was unheard of, however over time, web users have become au fait with its concept. What’s worse, installing an ad blocker has never been easier!
At Channel 4 we create a catalogue of award winning content so we don’t want our users to block ads, which is why we don’t let them! We want them to value our advertising, so we used Captain Obvious to show All4 users that ads can be entertaining by showcasing a range of outcomes when users clicked ‘block’.
When a user watched the ad, we gave them a choice to block it. If they clicked block, Captain Obvious would shield the screen in a variety of playful ways. Not only that, but we let Hotels.com block some of our best loved programme promos including Peep Show, Gogglebox and Misfits.
Partnering with Channel 4 once again has allowed us to be adventurous and innovative, creating content that encourages engagement over passive video views. It’s a fun spot of digital advertising and we hope that it gives All 4 viewers a smile, obviously. - Vincenzo Bruno, Senior Brand Manager, EMEA Hotels.com
Making it Happen
At Channel 4, we’re repeatedly at the forefront of innovation, developing pioneering technology to deliver exciting campaigns for our clients. Pushing boundaries is intrinsically linked to our remit. It wasn’t just the green screen, the ton of dry ice, or the giant hands that made this unique; it was the technology used to deliver a seamless execution by overlaying different creatives, at different intervals, whilst still providing a great user experience on All4.
For Hotels.com, we licensed clips from All4 shows, which built a strong brand affiliation through association with the platform rather than the programme. Furthermore, by using Captain Obvious as a blocker for our shows, we made it feel disruptive - let’s face it, no other broadcaster would interrupt their own promos.
The interactive ad blocker creative helped drive impact over and above the standard creative, with those who recognised the ad blocker creative more likely to agree that:
• Hotels.com is different +120% Hotels.com stands out +24% Hotels.com is innovative +35%
Those who recognised the Hotels.com advertising were more likely to have positive impressions of the brand:
•They were twice as likely to see Hotels.com as trendsetters 51% more likely to see Hotels.com as unique
• 21% more likely to see Hotels.com as ‘for people like me’
And more likely to be a customer of the site:
• 58% of those who saw the Hotels.com advertising said they were more likely to consider using the brand as a result
• Those who recognised the Hotels.com advertising were 3x more likely to have found out more about Hotels.com
• 67% more likely to have booked a hotel with Hotels.com