UKTV Play reveals innovative off-air campaign and product update to boost growth

Love Your Thing

Wednesday 15 June 2016

  • 'Love Your Thing' campaign positions TV on demand service UKTV Play as the entertainment brand that serves the eclectic viewing tastes of Britain
  • The national heavyweight digital outdoor campaign includes award-winning data-informed advertising
  • UKTV Play will run the world's first dynamic, social TV Chatterbot recommendation engine
  • Overhaul of UKTV Play user experience

Leading entertainment company, UKTV, has announced the first major marketing campaign for its fast-growing on demand TV brand, UKTV Play.

The heavyweight on- and off-air 'Love Your Thing' campaign will celebrate the diversity of TV that Britain holds dear, from cutting-edge comedy to historical documentary, ghostly adventures to period drama. The campaign recognises the passion that exists around certain types of programming, and affectionately dubs this people's 'thing'. Whatever a viewer's 'thing' is, UKTV Play loves and celebrates it, in a world where on demand TV is globally homogenised.

Launching this week, the integrated campaign comprises of heavyweight on-air advertising, national digital outdoor marketing, social and publicity executions, and an award-winning location-based initiative, being triggered by specific weather conditions, traffic and time.

Off-air digital support will include the world's first social TV recommendation engine, run via an intuitive Facebook Messenger Chatterbot, due to be rolled out later this month.

Commenting on the campaign, UKTV's Chief Marketing & Communications Officer, Zoë Clapp said,

UKTV Play is the bright and exciting TV on demand service for Britain, and what's more, it's totally free. It's already UKTV's fastest growing brand so we're going big and bold with our first innovative off-air marketing. With this campaign we're binning the sad old notion of a TV 'guilty pleasure', and celebrating the nation's favourite pastime. Whether your thing is natural history, real crime, period drama or classic comedy, UKTV Play will be with you.

The brief for the campaign was to position UKTV Play as an energetic and disruptive entertainment product brand that people across the country identify with as one that represents them, and the entertainment they love. UKTV has worked with advertising agency Antidote to produce the off-air campaign creative, which centres on the breadth and eclecticism of UKTV Play's content offering, and celebrates the fact everyone has their own TV 'thing' they're 'in to'. It presents the service as being here to serve the nation's individual tastes and needs, by heroing programmes and genres in a fresh way and creating an emotional connection with the audience.

Antidote's Creative Director, Teddy Keen, said, "UKTV Play has something the other players don't - an unapologetic appreciation of the individual when it comes to TV. In that way 'Love Your Thing' is a simple idea that comes straight from the heart of the brand and reminds us all that it's okay to watch the stuff we love, no matter what that is."

Media buying and planning has been managed by award-winning media agency PHD Rocket, part of the Omnicon Group.

The dynamic off-air assets will roll out as a national heavyweight digital outdoor campaign. The campaign features £250,000 worth of real-time data-informed advertising, which UKTV won as first prize in Talon's inaugural Smarter as Standard competition, for providing the best creative use of contextual digital 'out of home' advertising as part of a wider campaign. The outdoor ads will react and update when triggered, dependent on location, environment and when specific conditions are met. Spots in locations such as high streets, shopping malls, trains and rail stations will be informed by intelligent traffic, weather and location data feeds. Antidote will use OpenLoop to update the creative throughout the campaign live period as required.

The off-air will be supported on-air by a new conceptual brand promo, genre-specific clip-based promos and BEOPS.

The social media campaign, which includes the world-first TV recommendation Chatterbot, created and managed by agency Social Life. Activity will centre on the hashtag #Loveyourthing.

UKTV Play's new promo

UKTV Play's new promo

New UKTV Play

To coincide with the marketing push, UKTV is also revealing significant updates to its UKTV Play interface. Based on extensive A/B testing, the revamped service has been designed to make viewers' experience more enjoyable and personalised. The fresh new look and feel features a more focused approach to finding favourite programmes through a better organised homepage, higher-quality programme images and the introduction of easy-to-view genre listings. In addition the new programme guide makes it easy to find on demand programmes from the TV schedules. The new look UKTV Play will launch on PC today, with other platforms to follow.

UKTV Play's General Manager Emma Boston commented, "UKTV Play has a vast and diverse catalogue of quality shows, which caters for everyone's 'thing', whether that's a love of drama or obsession with true crime. We wanted to reward users with an even better UKTV Play, and rigorous A/B testing has allowed us to develop a brilliant new streamlined interface to ensure visitors can find something great to watch in seconds. The new look site is set against an aesthetic, clean white background to give it a premium feel that mirrors the quality of our content. Our research shows that once people come in to use UKTV Play, they're very likely to keep coming back, so it's crucial their experience is first class every time."

Latest figures show UKTV Play achieved a record-breaking 81% year-on-year growth for Q1 2016, with the service also recently celebrating one million app downloads. UKTV Play has this year been shortlisted for Best Digital Video Platform/Service in the Broadcast Digital Awards for the second year running, alongside established market players All 4, BBC iPlayer and The ITV Hub.

UKTV has ten, highly-defined TV brands including market leading free-to-air channels Dave and Drama, and on demand TV service UKTV Play. The independent British broadcaster is recognised for the popularity and critical success of its burgeoning slate of original programmes such as Dave Gorman: Modern Life is Goodish, Storage Hunters UK, Alan Davies: As Yet Untitled and Taskmaster. All of these shows are available to watch on UKTV Play, and have contributed to the service's recent success.

UKTV recently announced Zoë Clapp as its new Chief Marketing & Communications Officer, a promotion from her previous role as Communications Director. She has overseen all elements of the UKTV Play campaign. For interview requests please use details below.


Project management: UKTV Marketing - Emily Latham, Helen Sebzda On-air creative: UKTV Creative - Scott Russell, Paul Philpott Off-air creative: Antidote - Mike Grumbridge, Teddy Keen Promo production: UKTV Creative - Producer, Nina Allsopp; Director, Matthew Goodwin; Creative Manager; Paul Philpott Social Media: UKTV - Leanne Levaux; Social Life - Alistair Parrington, Laura-May Coope, Robert Marsh


For more information and interview requests contact:

Lara Feinstein, Network Communications Executive


About UKTV

UKTV is the biggest multichannel broadcaster in the UK.

The award-winning independent has eleven imaginative brands - UKTV Play, Dave, W, Gold, Alibi, Yesterday, Drama, Really, Home, Eden and Good Food. These include the two most popular non-PSB channels in the UK and account for 9.31% of the British commercial TV market.

The company's most recent financial results showed record-breaking year-end revenue of £283m and EBITDA of £74.1m. It invested £123m in programming and related launches last year, and is becoming an increasingly significant investor in UK creativity.

UKTV has a truly innovative model, curating brand-defining commissions, high-profile acquisitions and the very best of BBC, alongside programmes originally shown on ITV and Channel 4. The network embraces technology to deliver inspired channels to audiences through Freeview, Sky, Virgin Media, BT, TalkTalk, YouView, Freesat, Amazon Fire and UKTV Play, and distributes its highly valued original programmes to 200 territories.

Now celebrating its 23rd year at the forefront of digital television, UKTV - an independent commercial joint venture between BBC Worldwide and Scripps Networks Interactive, Inc. (SNI) - is proud to be the only British television broadcaster in The Sunday Times top 100 companies list. / / @uktv_press

About UKTV Play

UKTV Play is the fast-growing on demand TV service where you can watch the TV shows you love from Dave, Yesterday, Really and Drama wherever you want, whenever you want. The good news? We love them too.

Love digging into history or laughing out loud to new, British comedy you can't see anywhere else? So do we. Enjoy an engrossing, nail-biting true crime story or powerful real life documentaries? No problem. In the mood to luxuriate in a decadent period drama or hang on the edge of your seat during a pulsating crime drama? We're with you. There's so much brilliant TV on UKTV Play - Taskmaster, Alan Davies As Yet Untitled, Suits, Parks and Recreation, Red Dwarf, Most Haunted, New Tricks, Pride and Prejudice, Call The Midwife, The Bill and Birds of a Feather - to name a few, so you'll never be stuck for something to watch.

With the UKTV Play app you can stream your favourite TV for free via your computer, tablet or smart phone. It has never been easier to watch the things you love most, so download the app and delve in.

You can also put your feet up and watch on the telly, thanks to Virgin TV, YouView, Amazon Fire TV and Fire TV Stick. If you're an M+ subscriber on Virgin Media or BT TV customer, shows from other great UKTV channels - Gold, W, Alibi, Good Food, Home and Eden - are on the menu as well. / @UKTVPlay on Twitter