While adland obsesses over this weekend’s Super Bowl, for which CBS has apparently sold out of 30-second spots, even at $5.5m a pop (crisis? what crisis?), the rest of us are still stuck indoors, many with pesky kids in tow, as Bungling Boris and his Blundering Buffoons dither over who will get the jab next.
Now, call us old fashioned, but surely if they immunise those who work in schools, playgroups and nurseries, then EVERYONE will benefit? Kids can get learning again, parents can get on with their jobs, and teachers can get back to what they do best. Guess, that’s just too simple.
Anyway, in the meantime, EE is playing its part in supporting the nation with a new ad campaign by Saatchi & Saatchi to raise awareness of the network’s ‘Lockdown Learning’ scheme, offering unlimited mobile data, BT WiFi vouchers and zero rating educational content because so many kids in this country still suffer from “digital poverty”.
A 30-second “Message to Teachers” TV ad , starring brand champion Kevin Bacon, kicks off the activity and will run during top ITV and Channels 4 shows. It will be backed by VOD, digital and social media executions and will also be shown during Premier League games on Sky Sports – better than the Super Bowl any day.
In a departure from his usual jovial style, our Kevin discusses “Just how crucial education is”, in honour of his mother, a teacher, whose photograph sits next to him.
He reminds viewers: “Millions of school children are being asked to learn from home, yet many have difficulties getting online. That’s why EE is offering unlimited data to kids that need it the most.”
To date, the Lockdown Learning support scheme, which is available to eligible EE and BT customers, has helped tens of thousands of families access vital educational resources across fixed and mobile networks, EE claims.
The ad urges teachers, parents and carers who require support to apply now.
BT consumer division CEO Marc Allera said: “We want to ensure no one is left behind while face-to-face teaching is on hold. Our Lockdown Learning support scheme has so far helped thousands of families access vital educational resources across both our fixed and mobile networks. Thousands of customers are now benefitting from free unlimited mobile data, we’ve given tens of thousands of BT WiFi vouchers out to schools for families and kids who need it most, and we will keep on giving.
“We want to help more families. I’d encourage anyone who needs help getting their kids connected for learning to apply for help from BT and EE through their school. And please pass that message on to anyone you think might benefit.”
So, what is the consensus around the Decision Marketing office?
Well, if there’s one thing this pandemic has exposed more than most, it is the national disgrace that the world’s sixth richest nation is home to so many people who can’t afford a computer, let alone a broadband connection.
According to Ofcom, about 9% of children in the UK – that’s between 1.1 million and 1.8 million young people – do not have access to a laptop, desktop, or tablet at home. And more than 880,000 households are without a broadband connection.
Of course, it’s easy to be cynical as big businesses launch ad campaigns to big up their own record in helping out during the pandemic. But at least companies like EE are doing something.
Maybe adland could learn a lesson or two…
Decision Marketing Adometer: A “top of the class” 10 out of 10