7DKS Turns Advertising into Entertainment with Tropika Island of Treasure Trans-Media Campaign

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Jozi-based agency, 7 Different Kinds of Smoke (7DKS) recently turned traditional advertising on its head when instead of interrupting viewers with standard advertising, it transformed the promotion and production of popular TV series, Tropika Island of Treasure into a 360-degree trans-media entertainment campaign.  With an average weekly viewership of nearly 2 million views, it’s clear consumers couldn’t get enough of this entertainment driven strategy and with an overall ROI of 672%, it’s safe to say that online, print, media and television channels were all enjoying “da smooth life” with Tropika.

A Fresh Approach

By the end of the fifth season, the Tropika Island of Treasure franchise had grown into a powerful brand asset. The campaign however needed to be refreshed as elements had become focussed on the show rather than the brand and its consumers. Tropika wanted to be seen as the creative conceptualising force behind the show and the lifestyle rather than merely as a sponsor of a television series. In addition, viewers indicated a desire to see the focus placed more on non-celebrity participants so that they too could have a real chance of winning the grand cash prize at the end of each series.

Driving Sales and Entrenching the Brand

A change of direction was needed for the sixth season, which is why we concentrated our efforts on engaging consumers and driving sales by entrenching Tropika as an aspirational brand within its target market,” explains 7DKS managing director, Ryan Gandalf van Jaarsveld.

To this end, client agreed to change the show’s format from a celebrity focused programme to a series that made six fortunate members of the public the stars of the show. Instead of using real celebrities, 7DKS leveraged the aspirational value of the Tropika’s target market by turning consumers into celebrities. This was achieved by making the monthly winners famous not only in print but also on TV, radio, online and on the ground.

Dominating the Air Waves

A single episode of Tropika Island of Treasure secured 25% of available viewership, despite being aired during election results and in the same time slot as popular news programmes and soap operas. “At 7DKS we remain firm in our belief that as brands and advertisers, we shouldn’t interrupt the entertainment of our viewers. It’s our job to bring them content that is interesting and exciting to watch on whatever their preferred medium may be. The success of the Tropika Island of Treasure campaign reaffirms this theory,” says van Jaarsveld.

Branded Entertainment

A “celebrity halo” was created around each of the six contestants as they were filmed enjoying a taste of “living da Tropika smooth life” and interviewed and profiled on exceptionally popular television programmes including Live Amp and RGB, as well as in various editorial and celebrity sections of Drum magazine. Due to the engaging nature of the content we were able to generate over R9, 000, 000 in unpaid PR for the winners.

“To boost our winners’ profiles we made sure they were highly visible in the media space at all times. Our approach was very aggressive and each week we would secure TV inserts backed up with print inserts and solid PR support. Furthermore, all communication was tied into the sales messaging making for a truly trans-media campaign. By continuously generating content that was so aspirational, we were able to extend the reach and value of the Tropika Island of Treasure asset,” adds van Jaarsveld.

Winning Formula

With the total media value for Tropika Island of Treasure 6 confirmed at R59 760 671, 05 it’s safe to say that branded entertainment is a winning formula. Furthermore, the campaign achieved a 90% reach, an AVE frequency of 23, as well as an incredible 1 000 television slots. It seems that when it comes to Tropika, 7DKS certainly knows exactly what it takes to ensure the media and consumers continue to enjoy a taste of “da smooth life”.

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