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Virgin Trains announces new joint integrated campaign

Press Release   •   Jun 12, 2017 09:00 BST

Virgin Trains today announces two new TVCs as part of an integrated campaign. The two new TV ads, which aired for the first time over the weekend, are part of a distinctive new campaign and approach that aims to drive customer appraisal and tackle alternative modes of transport head-on.

Virgin Trains has taken a completely different approach to its advertising with a campaign that is bigger, bolder and braver than ever before, whilst retaining the wit and humour of the Virgin brand. The campaign shows people that not only is Virgin Trains good value for money, but that there are many benefits to travelling with the train operator.

The two new TVCs follow the protagonist in an important decision to choose the best way to travel to a big job interview - highlighting how Virgin Trains helps customers in some of life’s important decisions. The campaign also builds on and reinforces Virgin Trains as leaders in customer experience.

The campaign, which launched this weekend with a 60” spot, will include two new TVCs, press, OOH, radio, digital and social, to deliver a cheeky tone and energetic new look and feel for Virgin Trains across all channels.

This is the first campaign created by Anomaly, Virgin Train’s new lead creative agency. Anomaly were appointed in February.

Danny Gonzalez, Marketing and Sales Director at Virgin Trains on the east coast, said: “After on-boarding Anomaly as our new agency, we were confident of delivering a campaign with them that would not only disrupt the sector but also make waves in a broader space. This new integrated campaign delivers on that ambition, and then some.”

Katie Knowles, Marketing Director at Virgin Train on the west coast, said: “In order to drive behaviour change and get people to consider the Virgin Trains as their preferred mode of transport, we needed to create a campaign that would be fundamentally disruptive. Through our new advertising, we’re putting our product and experience front and centre, driving reappraisal in a fresh, exciting way. This campaign is so different. It’s really Virgin.”

The ads tell the story of Valerie as she questions whether she should travel by car or by Virgin Train, or plane or Virgin Train for a big job interview. Creatively this is asked in a different way altogether. Does she want an experience that’s reminiscent of chaotic and stressful Speedcore music? Or does she want to be immersed in an experience that’s more like the sweet and smoothing tones of Spandau Ballet? The two spots follow the protagonist as she ponders this decision in a comical and hyperbolic way.

The TV ads were written by Oli Beale and Craig Ainsley and directed by Emmy award-winning Tom Kuntz.

Kuntz is one of the industry’s most respected and talented directors and the man behind Cadbury’s “Eyebrows”, Axe “Chocolate Man”, the Skittles series and Old Spice “The Man Your Man Could Smell Like.”

Oli Beale, Executive Creative Director and Partner, said “It’s just great that the Speedcore genre is finally getting the public recognition that it’s so long deserved”

Working as part of a close interagency group, Anomaly has collaborated with MG OMD and TMW to create the campaign. 

About Virgin Trains:

Stagecoach and Virgin are working in partnership to operate the East Coast and West Coast inter-city routes under the Virgin Trains brand. Together, they are on track to revolutionise rail travel across the UK.

The combined network connects some of the nation’s most iconic destinations including Glasgow, Liverpool, Birmingham, Manchester, Edinburgh, Newcastle, Leeds, York and London.

Virgin Trains is committed to delivering a high speed, high frequency service, offering shorter journey times, more comfortable travel and excellent customer service. Customers consistently rate Virgin Trains as one of the top long-distance rail franchise operators in the National Rail Passenger Survey (NRPS) commissioned by industry watchdog, Transport Focus.

On the East Coast route, £140m is being invested to create a more personalised travel experience. We have already invested £21m to completely revamp our existing fleet and customers can now benefit from 42 additional services (22,000 extra seats) per week between Edinburgh and London. 2018 will see the introduction of completely new Azuma trains being built in the UK by Hitachi.

The West Coast route has a proud record of challenging the status quo - from introducing tilting Pendolino trains, to a pioneering automated delay repay scheme and becoming the first franchised rail operator to offer m-Tickets for all ticket types.

Visit the Virgin Trains Media Room - virgintrains.co.uk/about/media-room - for the latest news, images and videos. Subscribe here for regular news from Virgin Trains.

Press Office: 0845 000 3333.

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