Vodafone & WPP Team Red (O&M London & MEC) have just launched the first official VOXI film for the recently launched youth brand, marking the first time ever that a telecomms brand has built “youth for youth” into all strategy, activation and creative.
The 2 minute launch film has everything from human hotdogs and sushi-sculpted mermaids, flying cats and dabbing grannys, to a Nutella-filled bathtub and a horse sporting a gold set of grills. O&M London worked with Vodafone on VOXI from its conception, when the brand was just a blank slate, evolving it into a brand with weird and wonderful content celebrating today’s Internet culture and creativity.
However, VOXI isn’t just new branding and creative. It’s a whole platform for youth generated content. Over 100 VOXI Creators, comprised of artists, filmmakers, bakers, knitters, illustrators and designers to name a few, will take the creative reigns under VOXI Curators – well-known creative talents from actors to entrepreneurs. A community which celebrates endless creativity and endless possibilities. As with everything to do with VOXI, transparency was key. So every content creator is compensated for work, including access to mentorship.
The new brand identity was headed up by O&M London’s new Head of Design, Dani Matthews. A newcomer to Adland, Matthews hails from the fashion world and sought inspiration from what she refers to as an innately creative, and liberal realm for VOXI’s latest project. Prior to heading up the design department at O&M, she held positions at Mr Porter, Finery, H&M and Calvin Klein.
Early on, the agency tested all creative concepts on the new brand’s target audiences. What they found completely changed perspectives.
O&M London Head of Design, Dani Matthews explained, “One of the things that has been brilliant, and we were passionate about from the start, is genuinely listening to the audience. Don’t assume something is the right thing to do until you hear it directly from them. It’s why we brought The Pipe (Ogilvy’s Creative internship scheme) in early and asked for their for input on absolutely every element. Thanks to the Internet, this audience has the broadest point of view imaginable – more so than any other generation that’s come before it. That is an incredible thing for creativity.”
The youth brand is a celebration of the best content, the weird and eccentric moments created by YOU- rather than tapping into ‘Internet culture’, it celebrates it for all its quirks.
Vodafone harnessed the creative prowess of The Pipe and the WPP Fellowship, allowing the best and brightest young talent to run the show. Vodafone were first presented with work done by these young creatives before the idea had come to full fruition. The strategy was presented by someone who fit the target demographic. The final creative is an impactful combination of contemporary, candid images all framed within the VOXI logo, serving as a window to endless iterations of new content.
Dani Matthews continued to say, “We definitely didn’t want to make assumptions about our youth audience. We wanted to communicate to them without labels or putting them in a box. Agencies and brands often group 16 to 24 year olds as the same person. But in reality there is a massive difference in tastes, milestones and preferences as you get older. We’ve made sure the creative has the flexibility to be democratic to this audience.”
VOXI’s launch is both a brand first and a telecomms industry first in multiple spheres. VOXI will be the first brand to be discovered in social media ‘stories’. The first advertiser on Snapchat University Stories and to ever use clickable Twitter video. The first ever key program sponsor for MTV and MTV Music. The VOXI brand engaged with university students during fresher’s week recently with surprise activations and a VOXI Members Club of student ambassadors. The brand was present at 20 universities across the UK covering 25% of the student population.
The 2 minute film will be complemented by creative content across Instagram, Snapchat, Twitter, YouTube and Facebook today; with no content ever being repeated. The launch event for VOXI the brand last month featured appearances from Anthony Joshua, Dua Lipa and Liam Payne.