Happy Hour ‘bring the Sunshine’ in new SunLife online ad campaign

Posted in: Video Marketing

SunLife, one of the UK’s leading financial services companies, launched their latest insurance offering which is guaranteed to get people talking. Launched on April 1st their Guaranteed Sun Insurance product is just what fans of staycations and British Summertime have been waiting for, and we were thrilled to create the online advertising campaign to launch this much needed new insurance product.

Developed by Happy Hour and SunLife’s content team, filmed on location locally in Brean, and fully post-produced in our Bristol Office, the fun TV commercial-style advert, showcases SunLife’s unique solution to the problem of unpredictable great British weather. Available from just £4.99 a month, Guaranteed Sun Insurance provides the ability to unleash ‘the Sun’s full 4.26 million metric tons per second of energy, directly to you and your family’s faces’ even on the cloudiest days, allowing families to enjoy the holiday they’d planned.

This new product is being launched at the ideal time as people prepare for their summer holidays, though the advert notes that the plan does not fully function in rain, but would at least provide a rainbow. Enquirers will even receive a free SunLife umbrella ‘just in case’.

This launch comes amid growing consumer demand for alternative insurance solutions and the Guaranteed Sun Insurance will become a part of SunLife’s suite of existing products and services that focus on improving life after 50.

This is not the first time we’ve helped SunLife advertise the launch of their more unusual new insurance products. Check out some previous ads, also launched on 1st April in previous years:

Courtesy Pet Cover

Beard Insurance

We’ve been producing social media videos for SunLife, in addition to their TV adverts, for years now and always enjoy working with them to create fun, memorable ideas that engage with their audience.

If you’ve got an idea for a fun social video campaign, or want to talk through different ways to market your brand online then get in touch – we’d love to work with you too.

Legal Disclaimer: Happy Hour takes no responsibility for any consumer being able to purchase Guaranteed Sun Insurance, and no responsibility as to the success of any said product actually working…

Happy Hour ranked 48 in Campaign’s Top UK Agencies

Posted in: Awards, Team News, TV Adverts

Campaign top 100 UK Agencies - Happy Hour Top UK Agency

Campaign have released their annual ‘School Report’ listing the top 100 UK agencies as ranked by Nielsen. We are thrilled to see that Happy Hour are now ranked number 48, up from 55 last year.

The league table puts us amongst some of the most recognisable names in advertising and it shows a rise in smaller independent agencies and production companies that are making the list.

2016 was a difficult year across the industry, political and economic uncertainty and a changing media landscape lead to a lot of the traditional advertising structures changing. We saw a lot of agencies moving their production in-house so competition in the production sphere was even more fierce.

Nicola Tyler, Head of Commercials at Happy Hour explains, “As a full service creative production agency, we benefit from being able to work directly with clients from brand planning & conceptual development right the way through to delivery. 2016 saw us deliver some really exciting – and effective – work for our clients and we’re really proud to see that being reflected in our boosted position in the Top 100 UK Agencies listing. It spurs us on in 2017 and we look forward to working on even more engaging ad campaigns for our clients, both old and new.”

Speaking of last year’s work, here’s a quick snapshot of what we got up to:

If you’re looking to boost your marketing and reach new audiences then get in touch. From TV and Radio advertising campaigns to corporate film and social media videos, we love helping brands tell their stories. 

Happy Hour lend a Helping Hand on New Toolstation TV Advertising Campaign

Posted in: DRTV, TV Adverts

After a busy few weeks on multiple location shoots we’re pleased to announce that our latest TV commercial campaign for trade retail giants Toolstation began airing today.

The campaign brings a fun twist to the brand’s position as a ‘helping hand’ to the trade by creating a literal helping hand. This floating hand hovers unseen around the jobsite, helping traders and ensuring they have all the support they need from Toolstation to get the job done. The commercial also highlights Toolstation’s huge range of products, online stock availability check and click and collect service.

To create the memorable campaign we commissioned the design of an on-brand yellow and blue workman’s glove to act as the unseen jobsite helper. The process of filming was certainly an unusual one, with the hand model wearing a green full body suit having to duck and dodge around the traders on the set. As Happy Hour’s Lead Designer and Compositor explains:

“The post process on Helping Hand went smoothly due to careful pre-production planning and screen-tests. Multiple prop gloves with different wrist openings were used to ensure the illusion was never broken and the VFX team insisted that Mark (our professional hand artiste) was head to toe in green at all times (we all know Mark a bit too well now). Much of the floating glove was brought to life with many hours of traditional rotoscoping, in fact Toolstation’s Helping Hand would have been very useful with that process!”

The 30 second commercial was filmed over 3 days in a studio in Bristol and it follows our previous Toolstation campaign, The Trade Pros.  

The commercial will air from 1st February on major UK TV channels as part of a national campaign.

Happy Hour have been making DRTV and brand TV commercials for over 13 years and our award winning team love coming up with creative ways to bring brands to new audiences. If you are thinking about advertising on TV or would like some information on how video marketing can help your brand do get in touch.

Introducing Oodles of Poodles to our Animal Friends family

Posted in: Animation, DRTV, TV Adverts

Happy Hour’s latest stop-motion animated commercial for Animal Friends Insurance went live over the festive period, and this new ad focuses on some of Girlie and Cracker’s other animal friends which we first introduced in the Race ad.

 

The commercial, which started airing on Boxing Day, features a fast paced poem introducing several new characters to the Animal Friends family. These characters will be recognisable to viewers of the previous ad campaign but this is the first time we’ve heard them speak. Animal Friends wanted to expand on the humorous personalities we had built for Cracker and Girlie and give these new characters a distinctive voice too. Combined with the bright colours and a light-hearted tone this charming campaign is certainly memorable!

Created to boost brand awareness and drive viewers to obtain their own pet insurance quotes, this campaign conveys that Animal Friends are, like their customers, ‘pet lovers’ so they understand the importance of protecting your 4 legged friends. On top of being a provider that offers only pet insurance a key factor that helps them stand out in a competitive market is their charitable giving. Since January 2010 Animal Friends have helped over 360 animal charities worldwide making them the ideal pet insurer for animal lovers.

We always have fun working on the AFI campaigns and we look forward to revisiting these characters in the future.  

This commercial was directed by Gareth Owen. We’re experts in stop-motion animation production, so if you’re looking for TV commercials as distinctive and memorable as AFI’s, we’d love to hear from you. Call us today on 0117 929 9797 or get in touch here.

2017 video marketing trends to look out for

Posted in: Video Marketing

2017 video marketing trends to look out for

I’m sure by now you’re getting fed up of hearing about how important video is for your brand. Marketers have been talking about the importance of incorporating video into your marketing strategy for a good while now and 2016 certainly saw a big rise in branded video content being produced and shared. It was predicted that online video will account for 74% of all web traffic this year, so with that in mind here are a few of the video trends we think you should be experimenting with in 2017.

Personalised video

Brands that are looking to cut through the noise and add real value to their audience interactions need to be using personalised content that is more likely to resonate. By identifying, segmenting and targeting your ideal viewers this personalised video content can really deliver results.

These highly personalised, targeted videos are more likely to engage and prompt a response from the viewer meaning they should easily recoup their production budget in leads and sales.

When it comes to getting these personalised videos in front of your audience the best way is via email, putting the word ‘video’ in the subject line boosts open rates by 19% and increases click-through rates by 65%.

VR

There was a lot of buzz around VR in 2016 with many brands and agencies investing in the tech. 2017 is likely to bring cheaper options for VR headsets and the 360 degree camera allowing even more brands to experiment with this immersive video style.

Facebook and YouTube have already embraced 360 degree video giving viewers a simplified taste of what VR could be like. This type of immersive marketing is a game changer and the potential of VR is enormous. Travel brands can now let potential customers experience their destinations and advertisers can craft creative, interactive ads that put viewers off hitting the ‘skip’ button.

Temporary and imperfect video

Snapchat continued its rise in dominance last year and many brands got on board with the idea of temporary, imperfect and authentic content.

Instagram attracted a lot of attention for releasing its Stories feature which many saw as a copy of Snapchat. The appeal of both platforms to marketers was that the 24 hour-only content allowed brands to take a more authentic, unedited approach to sharing video and photos with their audience.

Authenticity is key to the success of brands marketing on these platforms, people are tired of being fed polished, edited, ‘branded’ advertising and crave a more ‘real’ view of the brands they interact with. Show behind the scenes glimpses, teasers of upcoming launches and daily life in your business. If you are having a TVC filmed get a team member to film the goings on on-set on a phone too. Many brands are using Snapchat and Instagram Stories to share their blog content in an innovative way, in fact why not make a fun video to announce news instead of a press release? This content is about being raw and honest with your viewers.

The great thing is that because the content only lasts for 24 hours you can use these platforms to experiment with different types of video content, refine what works and give you audience more of that they like.

We wrote about ways to use Instagram Stories in your marketing here.

Live streaming

Livestreamed video was a big deal on social media in 2016 but we think this will be the year that so many more brands get on board with it. While pre-recorded video is still important, brands who use real-time video to target their engaged audience at relevant times will reap the benefits.

In 2016 live streaming was a bit too new and people were a bit scared of it. The perceived lack of control and editing possibility seems to go against what many marketers know and love. However, brands that are brave enough to take the plunge are seeing boosted engagement amongst their viewers as well as more word of mouth marketing by their interested fans.

Like temporary video, live streaming shows your viewers your authentic, unedited side which they appreciate. Facebook Live and Periscope make it so easy for any team member to hop on their phones and start live streaming from your brand account. Whilst we recommend you be spontaneous we also think you should plan your streams out roughly so that you don’t end up rambling off on a tangent.

Like with Snapchat and Instagram Stories showing behind the scenes videos, live streaming events or using it to announce news content gives your viewers an interesting insight into your company.

These are just four 2017 video marketing trends we’ll be keeping an eye on but there are many more. Now more than ever it’s essential for brands to embrace video marketing and start using it in innovative ways.

Merry Christmas from Happy Hour!

Posted in: Animation, DRTV, Feature Films, TV Adverts, Video Marketing

Merry Christmas from Happy Hour! Well it’s certainly been a busy 2016 here at Happy Hour. From fake snowmen to feature films, stuffed toys to stop-motion animation we’ve done it all. We’ve worked with long-term clients and welcomed brand new ones too. We’ve launched the first ever commercial campaigns for brands new to TV advertising, and we’ve even picked up a few awards along the way!

Here’s a quick snapshot of some of this year’s work…

This is just some of the work we’ve completed this year, have a flick through the blog to see behind the scenes on some of the productions and find out what else we’ve been up to.

Remember, if you like what you see and would like to find out more about how our animation and video production services can help boost your brand do get in touch.

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

Let it all hang out with SunLife’s latest social media video

Posted in: Video Marketing

Over the years we have collaborated with our long-term friends at SunLife on everything from TV commercial campaigns to various social media video campaigns but this latest video brief was certainly memorable.

To continue their ‘Life begins at 50….’ campaign they wanted a fun, humorous social media video which showcases how when you reach a certain age you’re not worried about what people think anymore, giving you freedom to ‘let it all hang out’. The campaign is aimed at the same audience as our previous Game of Funerals videos and this particular video is just a different way for the brand to say thank you to it’s loyal customers and followers.

The festive shoot took place last month and all production and post-production was completed in-house by Happy Hour. The video is being used on SunLife’s Facebook page where it has already amused their followers and been shared many times. 

This video was directed by Jason Edwards, produced by Tiffany Donnelly and the Director of Photography was Robin Horn.

Quirky social media videos are a great way to engage your followers and boost brand awareness as a video like this encourages sharing. It’s also a great way to start experimenting with video marketing before taking the plunge into TV advertising. If you’d like to discuss a social media video idea you have or any aspect of your video marketing then please do get in touch.

Happy Hour launch Patient Protection’s first TV advertising campaign

Posted in: DRTV, TV Adverts

This autumn some of the Happy Hour team headed to a beautiful country house in Abbots Leigh to shoot the first TV advertising campaign for Patient Protection.

Patient Protection are a law firm dedicated to handling claims for people who have been subject to medical negligence. The quick turnaround TV advertising campaign aimed to launch the company to a new audience and introduce their caring, compassionate, customer-centric approach to aiding customers make successful claims. They aim to ensure all their customers have a positive experience with them.

The commercial focused on the patients to show that Patient Protection really puts them first. While we never see the face of the Patient Protection character they are always there supporting and aiding the patient.

We were lucky enough to only need one filming location and thanks to being able to film in every downstairs room of the house we got a great variety of looks from one home.

This commercial was directed by Matt Harris-Freeth and the DOP was Sarah Edwards who helped us capture the soothing warm visuals of the ad. Matt had this to say about the experience, “‘With You All The Way’ is about the support customers receive from Patient Protection. It was important that the ad had an overriding sense of hope and caring and that the brand identity was clear and confident.

By seeing scenes of patients at different stages after a medical mistake and the patient protection character always there to offer support, we were able to show a journey of how people’s lives are able to be made positive again. This was brought to life by strong, believable performances from our actors.

The brand colours were threaded into the ad through the patient protection character’s costume and it was important to me that this was just the right balance and that it didn’t draw the attention away from the patient characters as they are the main focus. 

It was a really enjoyable experience and a pleasure working together with such a professional and talented team.”

Happy Hour have been making DRTV and brand TV commercials for over 13 years and our award winning team love coming up with creative ways to bring brands to new audiences and tell their stories. If you are thinking about advertising on TV or would like some information on how video marketing can help your brand do get in touch.

behind the scenes on the patient protection TV advertising campaign shoot behind the scenes on the patient protection TV advertising campaign shoot

Happy Hour line up festive idents for Park

Posted in: TV Adverts, Video Marketing

It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas. The John Lewis advert has aired so that means the holiday countdown has officially begun. We partnered with our old friends Park Christmas Savings to create their fun, festive sponsorship idents for YourTV.

This shoot was a really fun one to work on, our studio space turned into Santa’s workshop with Happy Hour crew icing gingerbread men, decorating Christmas trees and fashioning snowmen.

The idents, directed by Michael Wright, showcase Park’s sense of fun with the humourous take on a police line-up tying in with the ‘lining up a magical Christmas’ strapline.

Idents are not just a great way to boost awareness of your brand but are also a creative way to test a variety of different video formats and styles in preparation for a full TV advertising campaign. To find out more about idents and how Happy Hour can produce video content for your brand get in touch.

Take a look behind the scenes of this festive shoot…

11 types of corporate video, and why you need to be using them

Posted in: Video Marketing

11 types of corporate video and why you need to be using them

Corporate video is a great way to communicate with a variety of audiences in an interesting way. As well as being more engaging than large blocks of text it’s also far more effective in conveying key messages clearly and succinctly. Including video on a landing page can increase conversions by 80% and 59% of executives would rather watch a video than read text.*

We’ve come up with 11 types of corporate video you can create and why you should already be using them.

1.      Brand video

This is the video that should sit on your homepage or About Us page. It needs to encapsulate your brand in one short, catchy video. You could use it to tell your brand story, highlight your values and what you stand for, or simply state what you do, why and how you are different from your competition. This should be the flagship piece of video content that communicates clearly to your customer who you are and why they should be looking at your site.

Danone use a lengthy brand film to tell their story, we created this film using a combination of stock footage, animation and their more recent advertisements. As a brand with history it’s a great way to tell visitors to their site more about who they are.

2.      Conference / Exhibition film

If you are planning to showcase at a conference or exhibition this film is the one you screen at your stand. Whether you display it on a full size TV screen or show it on a laptop this film needs to explain who you are and why you are exhibiting. Unlike the film above, this video can be more in depth in terms of products or services you provide. You know the types of people who will be attending the conference or exhibition so you can make sure you tailor your video to give them the kind of information they will be seeking. Often animations which incorporate text and graphics work well for this type of video.

Below is a film we made for Great Ormond Street Hospital to show at The Friendship Ball. The purpose of the film was to encourage the attendees to donate whilst educating them on how their money is actually making a difference.

3.      Social Media Videos

Have you noticed that your social feeds are dominated with images and videos? And that any text updates you share just seem to get lost in the scroll? This is because, apart from not standing out as much, the algorithms on some social channels such as Facebook ensure video content is more likely to be served to your followers. Social media videos are short, often emotive videos that encourage your audience to share them. These videos don’t necessarily have to be focused on one of your products or services however, they need to be on brand. Even creating videos that tie into specific events or news, such as the Olympics, work well to bring your brand to the front of people’s minds.

Here’s a social media video we created for SunLife, the humorous video ties into their ‘welcome to life after 50’ campaign which is a light-hearted appeal to their audience that they’re free to ‘let it all hang out’.

4.      Email video

Putting video in an email leads to 200-300% increase in click through rate (CTR). If that wasn’t enough just using the word ‘video’ in a subject line boosts open rates.** A lot of email services including Gmail cannot currently play embedded videos so a good way to include video that you are sure your recipient can view is to use a screen shot of the video with a play button graphic on top. Hyperlink this image to a dedicated holding page for the video, either on your website or a video hosting site, so that when they click it they are taken straight to the video. 

5.      Testimonial videos

You must have lots of great feedback from your clients and customers, raving about your products and services. Maybe they’ve provided you with case studies and quotes which you already share with other prospective customers. A great way to make this testimonial even more compelling is to film it. You can do a simple piece to camera where your clients answer questions about how your product or service helped them. You can also use text or animation to give important information and data about exactly what benefits your brand bought them. These testimonials can then sit on your website, ideally above the fold on a key landing page to help persuade viewers of your credentials. You can also use them in sales pitches and marketing emails.

We created a series of ‘Eligibility Stories’ for TotallyMoney.com. These video interviews featured real customers speaking about their experience using Totally Money and how it helped them, showcasing real, relatable people talking about your product or brand is often far more effective than a written quote or case study.

6.      FAQ videos

Many websites have an FAQ section to answer common queries about their brand, product and / or service. These sections can be text-heavy, long and dry so livening it up with a video it a much more enticing proposition. The video could be an employee answering the questions to camera or even clever animation. Using a video for this part of your website makes it quick and easy for visitors to find the information they need.

7.      Product demonstration videos

After watching a video, 64% of users are more likely to buy a product online* so instead of crafting compelling but long-winded product descriptions why not use video to showcase the product or service and how it works? This is especially effective if you have a lot of different features that can be hard to explain. Videos of this type can feature an actor or employee showing the product, an animation or even a whiteboard animation style video.

Google Chrome created a heart-warming video to showcase how the extensive features of Chrome can be used to document the life of a loved one. Whilst this video doesn’t go into all the finer details of Chrome, it gives enough of an insight for anyone wondering what the interface looks like and how it can be used. It’s also exactly the type of video content that is likely to get shared, spreading knowledge of the product even further.

8.      Internal communication video

If there is important information that you regularly need to convey to your employees then perhaps creating a series of video resources would be more convenient. These could be used as induction videos to introduce new recruits to the company history and procedures or even videos to explain your brand identity and guidelines.

9.      Recruitment video

A recruitment video is a great way to entice applicants. Showing them your offices, giving an insight into the company culture and explaining in detail the role via video sets you apart from other job adverts. It also allows you to give potential applicants more information about the company without them having to read a long job description. Videos like this work really well if you want to widen your search and use non-traditional channels such as social media to reach more people.

Starbucks have a great video that highlights the career successes of some of their team who started as interns or graduates. The video ends showing a link to their careers page. Any potential employee would get a lot from this video about what Starbucks is like as an employer and what sort of roles they might get.

10.   Training videos

Having training videos make learning internal procedures and programmes so much easier for new members of your team. These types of videos are ideal for teaching security and compliance elements of the role as well.

11.   Showcase your responsible endeavours

Corporate Social Responsibility is a big part of many companies’ culture and ethos. Showing what initiatives your brand spearheads or takes part in is a great way to show potential clients and customers a little bit more about who you are and what you stand for. Many people take a companies’ ethics into account when choosing who to do business with, so showing what you do to make a difference in the world is a good way to build trust.

Samsung partner with a volunteer organisation to bring solar power to areas where electricity is scarce. This video shows the benefits that initiative brings.

Here are just 11 types of corporate video you could be making but of course there are so many more. For an example of the types of corporate videos we have made take a look at our showreel, and of course if you’d like talk to us about your own video requirements do get in touch.

 

* http://blog.hubspot.com/marketing/video-marketing-statistics#sm.00000vak581a6kfldzrkv9pl89xyt

** http://blog.hubspot.com/sales/subject-line-stats-open-rates-slideshare#sm.00000vak581a6kfldzrkv9pl89xyt