The hard-edged creative approach has been adopted in an effort to distinguish Teletext Holidays from an increasingly crowded low-cost holiday market which includes Lastminute.com, Expedia and Thomas Cook. The market has been squeezed further by the likes of easyJet and Ryanair entering the fray.
Teletext's campaign is a co-promotion with the troubled holiday operator MyTravel, which owns brands including Airtours, Late Escapes and Going Places. It is its first TV tie-in with a third party. Each of the 30-second spots will promote the MyTravel brand and range of deals.
The campaign's creative idea aims to show how quickly Teletext Holidays reacts to the public's desire for deals.
One spot features a company executive who has been taken hostage. He is being forced to offer bargain deals while bound and hanging upside down amid carcasses in a refrigerated meat truck.
In a second ad, members of the public are shown wrestling in a boardroom with Teletext executives to force good holiday deals.
The aftermath of the encounter is shown in the third ad, where Teletext Holidays executives are shown bandaged, on crutches, limping and in wheelchairs.
The campaign introduces the strapline: "Don't go anywhere 'til you've been to Teletext Holidays."
"A burst of activity like this operates differently from a brand campaign that might operate for many months and allow us to build and maintain a message," Simon Sikorski, the brand manager at Teletext Holidays, said.
"We needed an idea that grabs attention in a tough market and stands out from competitors to get across the time-critical nature of the deals."
Media planning and buying is through Manning Gottlieb OMD. The campaign will be aired across channels including E4, Sky, UK Gold, UK Style, UK Food, ITV2 and the Paramount Comedy Channel.
Sikorski added that if the co-promotion proves successful, Teletext Holidays would look to use the ads as a template with other advertisers.
According to Mintel research, 21 per cent of people who took a holiday in 2001 used Teletext for research.
Teletext Holidays is available in more than 80 per cent of UK households through analogue TV on Channel Four, Five and ITV1, via the net, and on Sky, ntl, Telewest and Freeview. Its debut brand campaign launched last year with a £8.5 million push that included television, press, radio and digital executions.
The holiday arm was spun off as a separate brand by Teletext in March 2001.
The campaign was written by Keith Bickel and art directed by Carlos Anuncibay.
It was directed by Tom Greens at Harry Nash.