Driving conversations via newsbrands' newsworthy context

What do an ad for Heinz Salad Cream, Paddy Power's latest World Cup execution, ŠKODA's wrap of The Telegraph's sport section and Channel 4's cover wrap of Metro all have in common? They all also capitalise on newsbrands' newsworthy context to great effect, writes Newsworks' Jessie Sampson. 

Research by Lumen eye-tracking shows that newsbrand ads (whether in print or online) command high levels of attention. In print, 75% of readers look at each newspaper ad on average and ads are viewed for 2.5 times longer than the avergae digital ad. Meanwhile, advertising on digital newsbrand sites is 80% more likely to be viewed than advertising on non-newsbrand sites.

As well as tapping into this engagement, what the brands below do is harness newsbrands' relevant context to make a timely statement and fuel conversation – whether it's about the series everyone's talking about or in response to breaking news. For example:

Following the announcement that Heinz Salad Cream is set to be renamed Sandwich Cream after 104 years, Twitter went into overdrive with people experessing their (often heartfelt) views on the subject. In response, Heinz injected some levity into the situation with a clever newspaper ad giving its take. The fact that the ad was full page also helps in the attention stakes, with RAMetrics data showing that full page ads are paid more attention, deemed easier to understand, more appealing and more likley to prompt action.

Channel 4
Coinciding with the UK launch of The Handmaid’s Tale, series two, Channel 4 ran a dystopian themed cover wrap on Metro to create intrigue and build anticipation. The wrap, which wasn’t branded on the outside, simply stated “Women are not allowed to read this newspaper” on the front and “Reading confuses the female mind” on the reverse of the paper. The inside front page revealed what the ad was for. The stark statement is a brilliant example of how a newsbrand ad can go beyond promoting a producting to tie in with wider cultural conversations.

Paddy Power
With the World Cup comes many ads, but Paddy Power stands out from the crowd with a timely, contextual offering. Tying together the World Cup and the fact that June is the month of Pride, the betting company ran ads stating “From Russia with equal love” and informing readers that for every goal Russia scores, Paddy Power will donate £10,000 to LGBT+ causes. Not only does the ad tap into two very topical subjects, but it also scored spot-on contextual placement in the Daily Mirror.

In the context of the #MeToo and #TimesUp movements – both of which have played out in the press  – women’s positions across a number of industries has come under the spotlight in recent months. Picking up on a similar theme, ŠKODA’s #ThisIsOurTime campaign with The Telegraph highlights the role of women in cycling. Activity includes a wrap of The Telegraph’s sports section, which when folded reads “Female cyclists can’t keep up”, but open up the backpage and the message changes: “Some people still think that female cyclists can’t keep up”. As ŠKODA puts it, the brand – which has been the official partner of the Tour de France since 2004 – is “dedicated to giving female cyclists the recognition they deserve, to help close the gender pay gap, one cyclist at a time”. The partnership is a great example of how to both deliver a serious message in a newsworthy context and grab readers’ attention via interesting creative.  

First published by INMA

by Jessie Sampson 06/07/18

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