VARIETY TAKEOVER by Creative Artists Agency for V Australia

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VARIETY TAKEOVER

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Industry Airlines
Media Promo & PR
Market United States
Agency Creative Artists Agency
Creative Director Ned Mcneilage, Jesse Coulter, Ben James
Released May 2009

Credits & Description

Category: Best Use of Print or Standard Outdoor in a Promotional Campaign
Advertiser: VIRGIN AUSTRALIA
Product/Service: AIRLINE
Agency: CREATIVE ARTISTS AGENCY
Date of First Appearance: May 18 2009 12:00AM
Entrant Company: CREATIVE ARTISTS AGENCY, Los Angeles, USA
Client: Michael Betteridge (Virgin Australia)
Chief Creative Officer: Jae Goodman (Creative Artists Agency)
Creative Director: Jesse Coulter (Creative Artists Agency)
Creative Director: Ned Mcneilage (Creative Artists Agency)
Creative Director: Ben James (Creative Artists Agency)
Media Buyer: Mark Geller
Media placement: Trade Magazine - Variety - 5 May 2009

Describe the objective of the promotion.
Richard Branson’s newest international airline, V Australia, flies to and from Los Angeles and Sydney. The objective of this promotion was to drive awareness, interest, and business among the most influential people in Los Angeles: the film community.

Describe how the promotion developed from concept to implementation
To influence the LA film community, V Australia came all the way to the Cannes Film Festival. In the special Cannes Edition of Variety Magazine (the film industry’s daily bible), V Australia took over Variety’s masthead – for the first-time in history Variety changed the “V” in Variety – as we placed V Australia’s ad and promotional airline ticket on the cover. Five tickets were free round-trip first-class to/from LA - Sydney. The idea: as Los Angeles’ most influential members of the film community descended on Cannes and reached for their Daily Variety, they’d be hit with our promotion.

Describe the success of the promotion with both client and consumer including some quantifiable results
The target consumers went bananas. We heard stories of assistants being directed to find as many Varieties as possible and look for the free tickets. The Variety promotion was the talk of Cannes on the morning it broke. It was perceived by all as “very Richard Branson” to do such a thing. Immediately following the promotion, V Australia’s Los Angeles sales team saw a demonstrable lift in bookings (double-digit %), and multiple incoming calls from production companies and talent planning productions in Australia. The client was very happy. V Australia’s fun, profitable relationship with Hollywood was established with this promotion.

Explain why the method of promotion was most relevant to the product or service
Although Richard Branson’s V Australia is a “big” international airline, it actually launched with only two planes flying from Los Angeles to Sydney and back. So our target audience was very finite. In this case, we needed only to reach the most influential people in Hollywood, and especially those who travel internationally. By creating a promotion around a Los Angeles institution – Variety Magazine – and by placing “golden tickets” on the covers of a few lucky Variety covers (and a low-fare promotion on all the rest), V Australia created incredible results with the powerfully influential and the most-relevant community.