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Absolute Radio turns to iAds to promote Ian Wright show

Absolute Radio turns to iAds to promote Ian Wright show


Absolute Radio wanted to drive awareness of its Premier League commentary show, Absolute’s Rock n Roll. The show, which had recently hired football pundit Ian Wright up as a new commentator, is aimed at digitally-savvy football fans.

Working with advertising agency Albion, Absolute Radio developed a highly targeted iAd campaign, and was actually the first brand in Europe to embrace Apple’s iAd platform.

Launched on December 23 2010, the radio station was particularly keen for its iAd activity to reach football fans who received an iPhone or iPad as a Christmas gift.


The aim was to create an interactive experience for consumers, to demonstrate to them what happens “when football and music collide”. Absolute’s mantra for its football show is that it brings “rock and roll football” to the airwaves – a mantra that its iAd strategy needed to also promote.

The key was to develop an iAd that would engage iPhone and iPad users in an interactive and playful way, while allowing the station to create engaging and highly targeted campaigns.


An iAd that incorporated two interactive games, exclusive video content and a downloadable Live Scores app – an app giving real-time access to football scores and commentary – was built into both the iPhone and iPad operating systems.

One of the games, “Wheres Wrighty”, invited players to find Absolute Radio presenter Ian Wright as quickly as they could in a field at a music festival,. Users could then tweet their high scores.

The other, “Hotel Shootout” lets players trash a luxury hotel room, rock and roll style by kicking a football around it.

Albion also shot a film especially for use within the iAd, showing the band Skunk Anansie trying to score penalties while still playing their instruments.

The iAd also included some quirky little ad-ons, such as a main menu system that was fully interactive – allowing users to choose personalised backgrounds (such as their favourite football pitch).


Absolute Radio’s iAd managed to beat all of Apple’s original benchmarks set for the iAd platform. The average time spent within the iAd was 88 seconds – compared to Apple’s benchmark of 60 seconds.

The average tap through rate for the iAd was  1.19% - and peaked at one point at 1.30%.

Since the campaign launched in December, unprompted awareness of Absolute Radio’s Rock n Roll show is up by 10%, according to findings by Harris Research.

The iAd campaign ran until the end of the football season.   

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