For the launch of its first original crime drama series The Beast Must Die, streaming service BritBox tested Instagram video ads that used more emotional, human-focused creative, and saw a 7.6 point lift in campaign awareness compared to ads that used crime-focused creative.
Launched in 2019, streaming service BritBox is a subscription-based joint venture between ITV and the BBC that is available in the UK. BritBox offers the best of past and present British programming and award-winning content.
lift in ad recall with human-centered ad creative
higher lift in ad recall for human-centered creative than crime-centered creative
lift in campaign awareness with human-centered creative
higher lift in campaign awareness for human-centered creative than crime-centered creative
The streaming service wanted to use the launch of its first BritBox Original Crime Drama Series, The Beast Must Die, as a way to boost new subscriptions and raise awareness of the service’s wider content offering.
TV industry lore dictates that the crime genre can be difficult one to sell in ad campaigns, so to launch The Beast Must Die in the UK, BritBox turned to behavioral planning agency Total Media and Facebook Creative Shop for help. The Creative Shop team proposed that adding a more human touch to traditional crime-focused ads would help the campaign resonate more with people on Instagram.
To test this hypothesis, different creative assets were produced that focused on different aspects of the show: in this case, the human and the crime elements, with mixed-genre creative for the control group. Three different ad lengths—of 6, 10 and 20 seconds—were also used. The team selected automatic placements to favour the best-performing assets, and provide insights into what creative worked best with the target audience.
A multi-cell brand lift study then tested the crime-focused ad creative against the human-focused creative, giving BritBox even deeper insights into how each of them affected ad recall, consideration and action intent within various demographics. Through a solid collaboration between Total Media, BritBox and Facebook Creative Shop, the campaign overcame the industry-wide challenge that crime show ad campaigns don’t generate as much engagement as those for other genres.
The campaign ran from May 22–June 22, 2021, and achieved:
11.5-point lift in ad recall with human-centered ad creative
3.4 point higher lift in ad recall for human-centered creative than crime-centered creative
7.6-point lift in campaign awareness with human-centered creative
4.8-point higher lift in campaign awareness for human-centered creative than crime-centered creative
3.6 million ThruPlays
6.6 million people reached