888.com gambles with new ad campaign

15 November 2007 – By Gary Trask

Taking advantage of the liberalized advertising rules for gambling companies that went into effect in September, 888.com is launching a new campaign this month that will invite U.K. consumers to “enjoy the game.” And the Gibraltar-based gaming company is betting that the new promotion will help it expand from the online gambling world into the entertainment business.

“The campaign is groundbreaking, innovative and really differentiates 888.com from our competitors,” said Jon Sumroy, the company’s chief marketing officer. “888.com is all about letting its members, ‘enjoy the game’ and by letting people play with the advertising we are really emphasizing this.”

The new campaign is built around the idea that life is one big game and will use the media to create a game with which consumers can interact. The advertisements will begin in the U.K. and eventually spread to Germany, Australia and other countries.

The print ads are designed to resemble poker, roulette and other casino tables, with the headlines written on green baize and the answers to the headlines in card shaped boxes. Outdoor posters pose questions like “We’ve put another poster down the road. Red or Black?” The television ads will also feature games in which the outcome is only revealed online. In one ad, a giant piece of toast is seen falling from the sky. One side has strawberry jam on it; the other chocolate spread and viewers are encouraged to go online to find out whether it will land on the red or the black. Those who select the constantly changing correct answer when they go online will earn a bonus to use on the site’s real games.

In a statement released by the company, 888.com said it hopes “this campaign will start their journey to becoming one of the world’s leading entertainment companies.”

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