Virgin Media Speed Press Ads Pair Mo With Bolt


As the London 2012 athlete blackout period came to an end Virgin Media tweaked the Usain Bolt fronted ‘double your broadband speed’ campaign that it had been running prior to the Games by adding British Olympic double gold medallist Mo Farah.


The brand launched a new press thread of the initiative with Farah featuring alongside Bolt – both wearing a Richard Branson-esque fake beard and continuing the ‘Real Richard Branson’ theme of the earlier work.


Farah may be a long distance athlete, but like Bolt, he also demonstrated his incredible, world beating speed at the Games, so the Virgin broadband superfast speed message connection is simple


The campaign, created by BBH and with media planning and buying by Fifty6, rolled out across national UK newspapers the first weekend after the end of the blackout.


The Somali-born Team GB star, who won Games gold in both the 5,000 and 10,000 metres is reported to have signed up to an open-ended deal with Virgin Media worth £500,000.


‘After delivering a stellar performance in the Olympic Games, Mo has found a special place in all of our hearts and is a fully fledged national hero,’ says Jeff Dodds, executive director of brand and marketing communications at Virgin Media


‘We’re absolutely delighted to be working with him. Virgin Media is all about delivering brilliant entertainment, and nobody has got the nation cheering at their TVs more than Mo over the last couple of weeks.


In addition to the fresh print executions, the Bolt-led TV ads that began back in January 2012 and were running before the athlete blackout period started have also returned to UK TV screens. It’s revival came during ITV1’s ‘X Factor’ on Saturday night.




It may be fairly obvious move from Virgin and the creative may not be the most original or innovative, but by pairing up the two biggest stars of London 2012 so soon after the Games the brand will certainly hope to benefit from the post-Olympic feel-good factor in the UK.


Previous Virgin Media celebrity ambassadors have included Stephen Fry, David Tennant, Samuel Jackson and Uma Thurman.


One might even say that the brand has been very fast indeed when it comes to chopping and changing its brand faces over recent years.







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