Camelot has made a strong start in its bid to change its public
image, as its new pounds 15m campaign for the National Lottery scores
with viewers in the awareness ratings.
With only three years of its seven-year licence left to run, the company
has opted for a decisive break with the past. Newly-appointed WCRS has
created a more thoughtful tone, with a two-sided campaign to explain the
uses of lottery money as well as encourage people to play.
Gone is the exuberant ’It Could Be You’ slogan that carried the lottery
through its first years. The new ’Maybe, Just Maybe’ strapline stresses
the enjoyment of anticipation as much as the prospect of winning.
Two executions, first aired early in December, offer a new slant on the
idea of chance. They show a series of events running on parallel tracks,
with the promise of an interesting connection that might or might not
In one a young man and woman seem destined to meet, but the contact
never quite takes place. When it finally happens it is due to an earlier
lapse of concentration in an Asian umbrella factory: the man’s faulty
brolly spectacularly takes off into the sky and she notices him staring
at the handle.
The second film shows a man out in the Scottish Highlands for a spot of
metal-detecting with his son. Flashbacks to a rowdy clan meeting 300
years earlier suggest they may be about to stumble across a bejewelled
brooch that got trodden in the ground.
’These are metaphors for doing the lottery,’ says WCRS managing director
Stephen Woodford. ’The campaign is about positioning it in the world of
possibilities, as opposed to the world of prizes.
’’It Could Be You’ was a brilliant launch strategy, but it’s time to
change. The intention is to stimulate people and be
Not the winning that counts
The campaign’s second objective is to make people feel relaxed about
losing. Two spots being shown since November introduce some of the
beneficiaries of the pounds 30m that the lottery hands out each week,
emphasising that the money is never wasted.
Research showed that people associate the payouts with controversial
beneficiaries like the Winston Churchill papers and the Royal Opera
But the ads show that communities benefit too.
One looks at the Peterlee Brass Band in Durham, which received a grant
of pounds 66,000 enabling it to buy new instruments and a mini-bus. The
other features the Terence MacMillan Stadium in London, which used
pounds 140,000 to fund a new athletics track.
Camelot has faced little competition since the launch of the lottery in
1994. This is changing: the recent launch of Vernon’s football lottery
game Easy Play is to be followed in the spring by a weekly online bingo
game, backed by major TV advertising.
But sales for the main draw continue to be solid at around pounds 85m a
week, according to marketing director Ian Milligan. It is Instants,
which has slumped since its launch in 1995, which will be the focus of a
sales-building campaign in the spring, based on the same themes.
However, sales for the main draw are clearly benefiting from the new
ads. ’There were positive signs in December, with our best weekly figure
since June,’ Milligan says. ’We scored our best percentage uplift on a
rollover from Wednesday to Saturday.’