Lovehoney is calling its latest TV advertising campaign – its third in the last two years – its most ambitious yet and it will air across ITV2, Channel 4, E4, More 4, Five and the Sky platform. Nine 30-second ads have been created and they all feature comments from Lovehoney customers and a product offer. The campaign began on Sunday 17th November.
As with Lovehoney’s previous TV ad campaigns, there were issues with regulators Clearcast about what could be shown, with two main versions of the ad filmed. Neither version can go out before the 9pm watershed. In the version to be screened between 9pm-11pm, no sex toys could be shown – meaning the offers are illustrated with plain boxes instead of product images. This rule was relaxed for post 11pm viewings – when all products could be shown on screen.
Lovehoney co-founder Richard Longhurst said the firm had significantly increased spending compared to previous campaigns to really gauge the true effectiveness of TV advertising: “We have made a major commitment with this campaign. Previously, we dipped our toe in but not enough to properly work out whether this is an effective sales route for us. We really hope it is a success. The ad is very explicitly about Lovehoney, what we sell and what makes us different. It features actors using real comments from our customers about what makes Lovehoney unique. The aim is to show that buying a sex toy is a normal part of so many couples’ lives – as commonplace as buying an electric toothbrush.”
The ads were made by production company ABF Pictures and media buying was handled by TRT Direct.
ABF’s creative director Matt Barraclough said: “Lovehoney set us the challenge of communicating their core brand values in a TV campaign. They are the ‘sexual happiness people’ and wanted to steer clear of sexual fantasy and in turn normalise the use of sex toys. I don’t think I’ve ever seen a sex toy brand take such a direct route in their TV advertising. I think this direction will positively encourage purchase decisions from the consumer by asking viewers to talk openly about their sex lives.”