NEW ZEALAND – Skinny may not have the biggest advertising budgets, a legacy of innovation, or the heft of their beloved competitors in the telco market. But what they do have is an army of customers who love them. So much so, that Skinny have won Consumer NZ’s People’s Choice Award in the mobile category 5 years in a row. These are lovely, happy customers who would gladly recommend Skinny to their friends and/or family.

Which is where Friend-vertising comes in.

Considering that word of mouth is 83% more effective than advertising*, and that it seems like everyone in New Zealand knows someone who knows someone, Skinny’s new Friend-vertising campaign aims to reach everyone in New Zealand with an ad for Skinny fronted by a person they know.

A highly targeted direct campaign that operates at a national broadcast level.

Friend get nation, if you will.

To do this, the campaign stars literally heaps of happy Skinny customers, each fronting their own highly produced audio-visual commercial, imploring their friends and family to join them on Skinny.

Playlist: Friend-vertising


In each, a happy customer stands alone in a two-person, friendship scenario – like riding a see saw, water skiing, or playing chess – and talks about how Skinny’s mobile network covers 98% of places Kiwis work and live. How Skinny are a Kiwi brand, run by Kiwis for Kiwis. That they have hundreds of thousands of the nation’s happiest mobile customers. And how they’ll do anything to save their customers money.

Hindi, Cantonese, Samoan, and Sign Language versions of the ad are running in prime-time TV slots without subtitles.

Out of home placements feature recognisable faces from the community and are geo-located to reach those who are most likely to recognise them.

In social media, those who missed out on starring in the TV and out of home executions can generate their own online ads, targeted to their friends and family.

The campaign launches this week with the broadcast of 46 unique TV ads, each one featuring completely different talent.

15 unique TV executions ran on the first night alone.

A first for NZ.

Says Natasha Gill, TV producer at ColensoBBDO, “This was the most complex campaign to ever blow through our building. Our tiny brains would melt every time we did the math on fitting so many people into a normal production timeline. But it was definitely worth it. Probably?”

Says Rachel Leyland of PhD Media, “This has been the most ridiculously hectic, but amazing campaign to work on. It’s personalization on mass, effectively turning out talent into our channels, with our job being to get maximum reach and LOLs with the people they know.”

Says Ally Young, Brand Lead for Skinny, “In a new world of social isolation and working from home, connection to our friends and family are more important than ever. This new campaign feeds directly into that insight – and is a playful take on the importance of social connection.”

*According to a Neilson Holdings report on the efficacy of word-of-mouth advertising.

The campaign went live on March 22nd. Keep an eye out for someone you know.

Let’s watch them all!


Skinny Friend-vertising 01 Chester



Skinny Friend-vertising 02 Prashanth



Skinny Friend-vertising 03 Dhiya



Skinny Friend-vertising 04 Sameer



Skinny Friend-vertising 05 Jamie



Skinny Friend-vertising 06 John



Skinny Friend-vertising 07 Aleisha



Skinny Friend-vertising 08 Joshua



Skinny Friend-vertising 09 Kita



Skinny Friend-vertising 10 Sarah



Skinny Friend-vertising 11 Neil



Skinny Friend-vertising 12 Alice



Skinny Friend-vertising 13 Kara



Skinny Friend-vertising 14 Benjamin



Skinny Friend-vertising 15 Lincoln



Skinny Friend-vertising 16 Reece



Skinny Friend-vertising 17 Celeste



Skinny Friend-vertising 18 Susan



Skinny Friend-vertising 19 Sam



Skinny Friend-vertising 20 Ben



Skinny Friend-vertising 21 Ruth



Skinny Friend-vertising 22 Kane



Skinny Friend-vertising 23 Kevin



Skinny Friend-vertising 24 Braden



Skinny Friend-vertising 25 Greer



Skinny Friend-vertising 26 David



Skinny Friend-vertising 27 Jacqui



Skinny Friend-vertising 28 Craig



Skinny Friend-vertising 29 Blair



Skinny Friend-vertising 30 Matthew



Skinny Friend-vertising 31 Vaughan



Skinny Friend-vertising 32 Donna



Skinny Friend-vertising 33 Mac



Skinny Friend-vertising 34 Linda



Skinny Friend-vertising 35 George



Skinny Friend-vertising 36 Elise



Skinny Friend-vertising 37 Gina



Skinny Friend-vertising 38 Daniela



Skinny Friend-vertising 39 Miri



Skinny Friend-vertising 40 Karena



Skinny Friend-vertising 41 Mikey



Skinny Friend-vertising 45 Metab




Ally Young – Chapter Lead – Brand
Hunter Haines – Brand Partner – Social
Frith Wilson-Hughes – Chapter Lead – Social
Janine Casis – Paid Social Partner
Otto Gebhar – Automation Analyst
Steve Imm, – Skinny Product Owner
Krissy Martin – Customer Marketer – Skinny
Shannon Evans – Skinny Mobile Product Owner
Steve Hay – E2E Journey Specialist
Gareth Killip – Chapter Lead – Skinny DevOps
Rhys Huber – Customer Marketer – Trade
Emma Biggs – Legal Business Partner
Ryan Drew – Chapter Lead – Performance Marketing

Agency: Colenso BBDO

Media Agency: PHD Media

Trade and Digital Agency: Platform 29

Production Company: Good Oil

Director: Dave Wood
Executive Producer: Lee Thompson
Executive Producer: Andrew McLean
DOP: Crighton Bone
Editor: Simon Njoo
Colourist: Pete Richie
Online Editor: Richard Betts at Blockhead

Sound Design: Liquid Studios
Sound Design: Craig Matuschka
Music Producer: Tamara O’Neill
Music Producer: Shirleyanne McDonald-Shaw
Stills Production: Match
Photographer: Troy Goodall
Retoucher: Jason King at SixtyFour

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