Velvet Friday 5: Five ad campaigns you should take a look at

EE partners Beatport to host 5G-powered club nights

A lot of predictions have been made in the past eighteen months about the future of live events. Could they ever operate with a full capacity? Would audiences even want to return?

But there was also a large chunk of the country itching for nightclubs and theatres to reopen their doors. And for those people, virtual livestreams became makeshift experiences while  venues were stuck on standby.

To bring these two worlds together EE has created a hybrid of the two using its 5G network. The first event, hosted in two Liverpool venues, will celebrate dance music with a line-up of DJs beamed in virtually, although this doesn’t mean revellers have to be inside the venues. The experience will also be livestreamed for viewers to dial in 4K at its 5GEE virtual reality outdoor pop-ups.

Of course, this does mean the pressure is on for EE not to glitch during blink-and-you-miss -it moments (remember the Glastonbury Live Stream issues?). But it also tells us the future of ‘going out’ isn’t necessarily confined to the four walls of a club. 


Paddy Power has a ‘Head of Fleets’

We thought it was going to be the new social phenomenon, but Fleets literally lived up to its name in that it didn’t last very long….. So this isn’t the appointment news we were expecting, but Paddy Power is stretching the legacy of Fleets as Twitter’s biggest flop with its new campaign.

Shaun Williamson, AKA Barry Evans from EastEnders – a character we can assume wouldn’t know what a Fleet is – has been recruited for the role. A spokesperson for the campaign said it reflects their efforts to pick up on the latest trends, and that they see Fleets having real longevity… 

It’s a brilliant, subtly self-deprecating move that could only be pulled off by a brand – like Paddy Power – that never takes itself too seriously – even if it is at the expense of Twitter!


A scented bus stop, anyone?

Hendrick’s Gin is thinking about bus stops differently – and it’s decided to give them a scent. No, not in an overflowing bin odour sort of way, but the kind that trickles a unique combination of roses and cucumbers from its roof.

The OOH campaign executed by Space also comes complete with a 3D bottle from which liquid (unfortunately or fortunately, not gin!) flows and a doorbell that, when pressed, plays olde-fashioned music and a Victorian gentleman-style monologue. It’s also got the ultimate must-have – a QR-code – that allows commuters to explore the product and different recipes.

Packing pleasure into the banal experience of waiting for a bus makes those frequent delays a little more forgivable.


Meat alternative brand This launches first OOH campaign

More of us are going back to the office, which means more of us are getting back onto public transport. So alternative meat newbie, This, has launched its first OOH campaign on the tube following £11 million in funding and a rapid sales growth of 250% in the past year.

This is also supported by targeted ads on social media to bolster its already witty feeds, enticing meat-eaters to try its synthetic chicken with the slogan ‘this is plant-based. Promise.’

And when discussing the tube-led strategy, co-founder Andy Shovel was certainly on the money when he said ‘it’s a nice change from viagra and hair loss products’.


Sephora launches ‘Black Beauty’ campaign

Beauty giant Sephora has launched a poignant ad to celebrate the traditions and influence of black beauty, asking the question: ‘what is beauty, without black beauty?’

The ad features a diverse set of beauty nomads, showing that make-up is inclusive of all races and genders, and pays homage to the black pioneers who established cultural beauty trends by diving into specifics like baby hairs and laid edges. It also shows how beauty is sewn into every facet of our lives, from drag queens prepping for a show to a mum styling her daughter’s hair.

But while the ad is a clear celebration of black beauty, it also makes clear that black culture has often been at the frontier of beauty trends, like cut creases, which are now commonplace on Instagram. And it deserves more credit than it generally gets.