Currys PC World: Bill Bailey rocks but caveat emptor

currysThinking of upgrading your laptop to a faster model? Well, with students apparently planning their return to university and mums and dads across the land continuing to work from home, it seems that everyone might – just might – be considering some new tech.

Well, that’s what Currys PC World is hoping, anyway, following the launch of a new advertising campaign, featuring comedian Bill Bailey testing the retailer’s latest laptops “to the extreme”.

The activity, devised by AMV BBDO, comprises a TV spot, YouTube and video-on-demand ads. It promotes the retailer’s latest “new term” laptops and is designed to “dramatise the lengths that the retailer goes to, to ensure the tech it stocks is the best tech for its customers”, the firm says.

In the first ad, our Bill is joined by Currys PC World staffer Natasha Vora to put the HP Pavilion laptop to the test by performing a Darkness-style rockstar stunt – complete with V-shaped guitar and angel wings – as the computer boots up.

Bill asks: “Can it start up in time for me to create the ultimate virtual rock gig?” He then climbs a scaffolding tower, where he is handed the guitar and fitted with the wings and attached to a harness, which he uses to jump off and descend while strumming away.

By the time he reaches terra firma, nine seconds later) the laptop has booted, ready for him to address his legions of fans, which turn out to be a solitary monkey. Billy No-Mates indeed.

The ads also give customers the chance to claim up to £150 off their new laptops with trade-in deal, and the retailer is also offering five months Apple Music, Arcade & News+ for free and free next day delivery.

Currys PC World head of brand Corin Mills enthused: “As students and parents across the nation start to turn their attention to the forthcoming new term, we’re really excited to unveil our brand-new ultimate tech test adverts.

“It’s been fantastic to work with Bill Bailey, who puts the tech through its paces to showcase the lengths Currys PC World goes to stock the best around and how our amazing colleagues are helping the nation choose their tech, whether it’s for school, work, or home.”

So, what is the consensus around the Decision Marketing office?

Well, it’s fair to say, Bill does a good job – in fact he does a great job – of deflecting what it is really like to deal with Currys PC World staff, who, if our experience is anything to go by are more interested in selling you the extended warranty – for which they get commissioned on – than anything else.

Then there is the Windows or Apple Mac “set-up fee” – a sneaky £40 charge – that they keep very quiet about until you go to pay. Of course, you can set it up yourself but they try not to tell you that either.

Or as the company would have it: “We’ll get you up and running in no time. We’ll set-up a Windows account, install our helpful Welcome app, configure any updates and create your recovery media.

“Your new computer unpacked and checked with an initial set-up completed. Our helpful Welcome App will guide you through key set-up options to get you started and we’ll configure updates to run automatically to ensure Windows is always up to date and secure. We’ll also provide recovery media on a USB stick so you can recover to factory settings at any time.”

Don’t say you haven’t been warned. We quite like the ad though…

Decision Marketing Adometer: A “just watch out for the sneaky stuff” 7 out of 10

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