NEW YORK U.K. mobile phone carrier Orange sponsored its first for-charity concert in London's Royal Albert Hall -- and introduced its own brand as a new act.
Orange partnered with RockCorps, which unites charities with companies to create nonprofit programs and events, to host artists John Legend, Busta Rhymes and Ludacris for a crowd of roughly 5,000 who participated in 60 volunteer projects. At one point during the Sept. 26 show, the brand took center stage to present an interactive advertising component.
Brand Experience Lab of New York created the in-stadium element. While it has staged interactive advertising for groups before, the largest crowd has been about 500 people in movie theaters, said Clilly Castiglia, chief discovery officer of BEL.
The experience was a game called Brick Breaker. The image of a paddle was projected at the bottom of a large screen above the concert stage. A ball appeared and broke a brick that was projected on screen. As the ball came down, the audience was instructed to lean left or right to move the paddle and hit the ball back up.
What BEL wanted to achieve, aside from creating a fun environment, was to see if the technology compelled people to play, which it did, said Castiglia. "So that was a real win on our part. And it was nice to see that even in such a large environment, the technology still resonated because the screen allowed everybody to feel like they were a part of the experience," she said.
Jodie Fisher, account director at M&C Saatchi, which worked on the project on behalf of Orange, emphasized the carrier's new brand vision launched earlier this year in several markets, "Together we can do more." The positioning was "born from the insight that people can achieve more working together than they can on their own," said Fisher.
The agency was challenged to make the brand live and breathe through sponsorship, to underscore to Orange customers what the brand represents. "Sponsorship is a good way to bring the brand vision to life, because it often involves experiences where people come together and can actually provide a real proof point for that vision. The human joystick exemplifies what 'Together we can do more' stands for," Fisher said.
"The only way the game is successful is if everybody plays together," Castiglia added.
Orange plans to roll out the game in other countries. "We are finding that this [initiative] translates across many cultures," Castiglia said.