Virgin Interactive to end shock ads after Banks Hoggins win

Virgin Interactive has pledged to drop shock tactics following the appointment of Banks Hoggins O’Shea to its pounds 1 million full-service advertising account.

Virgin Interactive has pledged to drop shock tactics following the

appointment of Banks Hoggins O’Shea to its pounds 1 million full-service

advertising account.



Paul Houlding, the partner at Banks Hoggins who spearheaded the agency’s

pitch for the business, declared that Virgin Interactive now wanted

advertising that was ’radical and relevant’, rather than shocking.



He added that the company, which counts ’Command and Conquer’, ’Star

Wars’ and ’Screamer’ among its best-sellers, had lined up nine different

marketing projects for this year.



Virgin Interactive has drawn fire in the past from sources as diverse as

the Advertising Standards Authority and the minister for road safety for

its controversial advertising. In November last year, the ASA upheld

complaints that an ad featuring a bathtub filled with blood was ’beyond

the bounds of acceptability’.



A month later, the minister for road safety made a complaint about

another advertisement for ’Screamer’ to the ASA because it appeared to

promote joy riding.



At the same time, Future Publishing, the computer games magazine

publisher, refused to run ads for ’Command and Conquer’ which it felt

were xenophobic.



The appointment of Banks Hoggins follows months of discussions with a

number of London agencies and the appointment of a new marketing

director, Louie Beatty. The Viacom-owned company split with its previous

incumbents, TBWA and Eurospace, after news of TBWA’s merger with Simons

Palmer Clemmow Johnson earlier this year.



The agency which emerged from the merger, TBWA/Simons Palmer, handles

the advertising for Sony Playstation and was this week appointed to the

brand’s pan-European account.



Topics