Case Study: How MediaCom Got Cycling Fans To Switch From SBS to Foxtel’s Eurosport

Case Study: How MediaCom Got Cycling Fans To Switch From SBS to Foxtel’s Eurosport
SHARE
THIS



MediaCom was hit up by Foxtel and Eurosport with a task of finding more people to watch cycling, and not just tune into the free coverage of SBS’ Tour De France. In this case study, MediaCom examines how it got cycling fanatics to change channels.

For the keen cycling fans, Eurosport, which is available on Foxtel in Australia, has the most comprehensive coverage of cycling on TV.

Foxtel and Eurosport together wanted to use this depth of coverage to get more people watching the channel. The problem is that for the majority of Australia’s 1.3m armchair cycling fans, competitive cycling starts and ends with the Tour De France – available free on SBS and for many that is enough.

Eurosport currently shows the other two “grand tours” live and uninterrupted, including the gruelling Vuelta a Espana (the Spanish Tour), but this depth didn’t appeal to the majority of the target market.

Cyclist in B&W

Objectives

The key business objective was challenging. MediaCom was tasked with increasing cumulative reach by 25% year-on-year. However, where and how were they going to achieve that kind of growth?

The team set out to identify an audience that Eurosport’s Vuelta coverage would resonate with, and to find a way to cut through – all on a limited budget of just $50,000.

Initially they looked at those Australians currently watching cycling on TV. This revealed an opportunity: the most reliable predictor of someone being open to the in-depth proposition (as opposed to the marquee headline events on SBS) was actually cycling itself; broadly, the more you cycle, the more cycling you want to watch.

MediaCom defined the target audience as “hardcore cyclists”. They turned their back on the 1.3m armchair fans that tune into Le Tour every year, and focused instead on the fanatical audience comprising of just 313,000 Australians, for whom cycling is their number one passion. They cycle regularly and are influential within their cycling networks.

The task was clear. How could they get closer to this elusive and influential group, and use the Vuelta a Espana to prove Eurosport on Foxtel has more live coverage than SBS to encourage them to make the switch?

Campaign

Conventional wisdom would dictate a contextual media plan of carefully-targeted magazine and digital placements, but they’d previously found this approach lacked the efficiency the small budget demanded and wastage was a huge problem they needed to avoid on their limited budget. $50k would be enough to secure a page in each of the specialist cycling magazines supported by a few hundred thousand impressions online.

Therefore, it was agreed that earned media would form the foundation of their approach.

Talking to the cycling fanatics, it became clear that cycling, as a sport or hobby, is profoundly social. From arranging weekend cycles, to gaining bragging rights for the smashing of a personal best, the value of cycling to this group was about so much more than just what happened on the road. It was a truly shared experience.

Eurosport Branded Coffee Carts

They had to find a role for Eurosport within the cycling conversations that mattered. So they used a combination of social, mobile, digital content partnerships and on-ground activation to become part of the conversations that mattered, mobilise key influencers and cut-through to this uniquely passionate audience.

This was all about getting the audience thinking about the races they can’t watch on SBS. The highest profile of these and the race with the most passionate following was the formidable Vuelta a Espana.

It was decided that they would use the Vuelta to start the conversation. More than anything, the Vuelta is a climber’s race. Climbing is shorthand for the ultimate passion, sacrifice and commitment to the sport, so to bring this to life they created the Vuelta-Skelta; challenging Australia’s cycling community to match the climbs the peloton endure in the real race. This would mean a climb of 7,136 meters for each cyclist, in just fifteen days.

To kick off the dialogue Eurosport partnered with Australia’s most influential cycling blog, Cycling Tips. This allowed them to call out the nation’s weekend warriors and drive word-of-mouth about the gruelling challenge being set.

The next step was to find a way to follow how cyclists would track against the challenge. Using Strava, the cycling GPS application, they built and populated a live leader-board of meters climbed. Cyclists were encouraged to post updates about the challenge across their forums and social networks using the hashtag #vueltaskelta.

This allowed the team to start thousands of conversations about Eurosport’s in-depth cycling coverage, but more was required. They wanted to find a way to reach the cyclists out on their Sunday ride and get them talking on social media about the Vuelta-Skelta.

Veulta Skelta Cycling Tips

From their research, they found out that cyclists rode predominantly in rural areas. Cyclists just couldn’t wait to get out of the suburbs at the weekend. This meant, however, there were no good places to stop and socialise, mid-ride. To give the cyclists a lift on their challenge and a place to share their Vuelta-Skelta experiences, they positioned Eurosport branded coffee carts along key cycling routes across Australia.

Results

The Vuelta-Skelta set Australia’s cycling fanatics abuzz.

Nearly ten-thousand cyclists entered the challenge, and together they climbed a combined (and exhausting) 52 million vertical meters (48% higher than the target) – every millimetre of which was discussed, shared and enjoyed on social media.

Weekend warriors across Australia discussed the challenge over 1,024 Eurosport branded coffees, whilst Facebook, Twitter and Instagram were humming with just under a million social impressions around the unique #vueltaskelta hashtag.

The Vuelta-Skelta campaign for Eurosport delivered a cumulative audience of 756,000, up from 530,000 year-on-year. This represented a rise of 42% – which smashed the 25% target. There was no other promotional activity over the campaign period and no changes to broadcasting rights that would have influenced this increase in any other way.

The $50k Vuelta-Skelta content strategy devised by MediaCom has earned Eurosport the right to start thousands of conversations around its superior cycling coverage and has encouraged many fans to make the switch from SBS.

Latest News

Pooled Energy Appoints Magnum & Co And The Wired Agency
  • Advertising
  • Marketing

Pooled Energy Appoints Magnum & Co And The Wired Agency

Swimming pool electricity retailer Pooled Energy has appointed Magnum & Co and sister agency The Wired Agency to its roster, following a competitive pitch. Magnum & Co will handle Pooled Energy’s social media and PR, while The Wired Agency has been appointed to manage the company’s search and display advertising. Both agencies will collaborate with […]

Masculinity Roasted In Clever New Ad
  • Advertising
  • Campaigns

Masculinity Roasted In Clever New Ad

Think masculinity means drinking a case without chundering? Well, rediscover it (& possibly yourself) with this top ad.

by B&T Magazine

B&T Magazine
WPP AUNZ Partners With Career Trackers Indigenous Internship Program
  • Advertising

WPP AUNZ Partners With Career Trackers Indigenous Internship Program

Advertising and marketing network WPP AUNZ has joined the Career Trackers Indigenous Internship Program as part of its commitment to a diverse workforce, and the creation of opportunities that inspire excellence. As part of the program, WPP AUNZ has welcomed its first three interns: Abi-Leigh Dillon (WPP AUNZ), Amy Mccutcheon (MediaCom) and Jacinta Evans (Ogilvy), […]

Taboo Goes On A Hiring Spree
  • Advertising

Taboo Goes On A Hiring Spree

Taboo has gone a hiring spree. And when it comes to sprees, that's far better than a shooting one or a farting one.

M&C Saatchi Group’s 1440 Shuts Up Shop
  • Marketing

M&C Saatchi Group’s 1440 Shuts Up Shop

Sadly, M&C Saatchi's 1440 is no more. And chances of it being reborn as 1550 not looking much chop either.

by B&T Magazine

B&T Magazine
Luke Kelly Becomes A Partner At HBT
  • Advertising
  • Marketing
  • Technology

Luke Kelly Becomes A Partner At HBT

B&T's not sure what's with that twirly thing in the press photo, suffice to say a vortex to an alternate dimension?

Women In Media Profile: Alison Michalk
  • Media

Women In Media Profile: Alison Michalk

If B&T's Women in Media profiles were an animal they would be a gazelle or lioness, or even a lioness eating a gazelle.

by B&T Magazine

B&T Magazine
Grant Broadcasters Makes Several Changes To Senior Executive Team
  • Media

Grant Broadcasters Makes Several Changes To Senior Executive Team

Independent media company Grant Broadcasters has announced a number of changes to its executive ranks. Grant Cameron will move up to become non-executive chairman for the company, and Alison Cameron (pictured above) – currently the chief operating officer – will assume the CEO role. Dugald Cameron remains responsible for the family’s investment portfolio and is […]

Shopper Media Group Partners With Mist To Offer New Tech & AI-Driven Capabilities
  • Advertising
  • Media

Shopper Media Group Partners With Mist To Offer New Tech & AI-Driven Capabilities

Australian retail out-of-home (OOH) business Shopper Media Group (SMG) has announced a partnership with AI-powered wireless networks provider Mist. The partnership will see SMG offer new WiFi, analytics and location-based services across the company’s portfolio of Australian shopping centres. Mist currently provides WiFi and location services using virtual Bluetooth LE technology to businesses across all […]

Indy Agency This Is Flow Wins Cruiseco’s $5 Million Media Account
  • Advertising
  • Media

Indy Agency This Is Flow Wins Cruiseco’s $5 Million Media Account

Travel organisation Cruiseco has announced the appointment of Sydney independent agency This is Flow (TIF) to handle its $5 million media account. This is the first time Cruiseco has appointed an agency, having managed its communications internally. Cruiseco is the largest and broadest distributor of cruise products in the Southern Hemisphere. With a membership base […]

Women In Media Profile: Naomi Shepherd
  • Media

Women In Media Profile: Naomi Shepherd

Need a Monday morning pick-me-up? You could stand naked next to the office fridge or read these inspiring words.

by B&T Magazine

B&T Magazine
APN Outdoor Takes Off With Queenstown Airport Contract
  • Advertising
  • Media

APN Outdoor Takes Off With Queenstown Airport Contract

Out-of-home media business APN Outdoor has won the tender for New Zealand’s Queenstown Airport. As part of the new agreement, APN Outdoor has flagged extensive development plans for Queenstown Airport’s advertising assets. The new contract adds Queenstown Airport to APN Outdoor’s existing portfolio of Auckland and Christchurch Airports. The media company will hire a South […]