It takes a brave agency to pitch and an even more courageous client to sign off an idea in 24 hours and move straight into production. Watch how Manning Gottlieb OMD and Age UK's head of content, strategy and brand Kathi Hall made it happen - and in turn, created the Thinkbox TV Planning Awards 2018 Grand Prix winner.
It would have been such a risk not to do it that I thought the risks were worth it to do it.
Hall's frank admission kicks off the Thinkbox film which uncovers how Manning Gottlieb OMD and Channel 4 worked with Age UK to create a campaign around a one-off Christmas special TV documentary, "Old People’s Home for Four Year Olds at Christmas" that resulted in the charity's biggest day for donations ever. "I don't think I'm ever going to have a campaign as successful as this one," Hall admits.
Watch Hall plus Hannah Gardner, client account manager at Manning Gottlieb OMD and Channel 4's group partnerships content manager Stella Onuorah reveal the back story and behind-the-scenes activity that went into charming the taboo out of the sensitive subject of loneliness in older age.
The 2018 Thinkbox TV Planning Awards judges gave the campaign the ultimate seal of approval, awarding it the Best use of content prize, as well as the overall Grand Prix.
Judge Nick Ashworth, marketing director at DFS and a previous Thinkbox TVPA Grand Prix winner, praised the Age UK/MG OMD entry for its "great background set-up, clear solution, brilliant advertiser-funded programming, contextual fit with the audience and clear results".
Channel 4 gave particular credit to the Age UK marketers. "To move a brief from traditional advertising to making a high rating telly programme is not to be underestimated," said Chris Braithwaite, Omnicom Lead at Channel 4. "The Age UK team were brave and imaginative to make this happen. The programme played out just before Xmas and was one of our most popular festive shows with a consolidated audience of 2.3m. Then to seal the partnership with a media first of creating ads from extra content all added up to a campaign that wowed the hearts and minds of Channel 4 viewers."