Vodafone: The Chase


Heart or Humor

Featuring Martin Freeman

In a world of increasing pressure on communications companies to provide stronger signals and more consistent coverage, Vodafone is taking a witty approach to convincing customers of their networks superior capabilities. Here take a look at their ad, “The Chase” by Ogilvy & Mather in London. We’ll give this commercial scores out of 10 for a range of the most vital advertising criteria. Take another look at this ad and see if our points are in line with your first impressions.

Memorability – 7 / 10

Heavy dialogue and fast witty humor fill the clip with sharp lines. This attracts millennials who are used to processing dialogue at this rate but may frustrate older viewers who’ll need to see the clip several times over before catching all the gags. There are no outstanding moments of brilliance or spectacle. The concept here is pure to get the message across, “Vodafone coverage is amazing”. This approach is good for delivering a clear and concise message, but not too effective at lodging the clip into people’s long term memory.

Effectiveness 8 / 10

This concept is part of a bigger picture. Vodafone wants to position itself as the leading network in the UK market for great coverage. This ad feels like a link in that broader marketing objective. In order to impress your positioning on a market, you must produce commercials that follow a conditioning approach – constantly reminding your audience that your brand stands for a certain notion. This certainly falls within that realm, as the entire concept revolves around delivering the key message with undisturbed clarity.

Style – 8 / 10

Vodafone is a gigantic network in the UK and as expected, the production value for the sequence is top class. A friendly face in Freeman leads the way in telling the story of the clip with a sarcastic style of acting that many Hollywood fans will recognize. This ad is not the prettiest and most glamorous example of a telecommunications concept, but well-delivered lines and memorable facial expressions go some distance in reinforcing the ads core themes to the desired audience; Millennials that care about coverage more than almost anything else in everyday living.

Heart or Humor – 8 / 10

The script is filled with ironic statements and sarcasm. The idea here is plain as day, “charm the socks off the millennial market”. The concept works on many levels. Not only is it an effective conditioning tool, it’s also a great casting in Martin Freeman. His face alone will relate to a large proportion of UK millennials who appreciate his roles in domestic and Hollywood projects alike.

Execution – 7 / 10

As a stand alone advert this doesn’t quite reach the heights one would expect from such a blockbuster brand, but as a piece of a larger puzzle, it certainly seems to tick all the right boxes. A strong script and clear message that is easy to digest combine well to reinforce Vodafone’s targeted market direction. Will it set the internet alight or win any major advertising awards? We wouldn’t bet on it.

a great casting in Martin Freeman


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