Extras sought via Twitter for Big Switch campaign shoot

1 May 2009

A hunt is on via Twitter for ‘ordinary’ people to replace the usual Irish models in a TV/online video shoot for the next phase of the Bord Gáis’s ‘The Big Switch’ electricity campaign.

Bord Gáis is about to embark on a refresh of its successful internet-led campaign, which last time round used a combination of Twitter and blogging, as well as mainstream press and TV, to get its message out.

The success of the campaign can be gauged by the fact that over 120,000 people switched from ESB to Bord Gáis for their electricity.

One of the online creative concepts being put together for the next phase includes footage of real people pressing switches and talking about why they made the ‘big switch’.

A campaign insider told siliconrepublic.com that the usual model agency approach was proposed for the original campaign. However, the team behind it felt that a more real approach was needed.

“Twitter and various other social-media websites have been very important to us when getting our Big Switch message out there to our target audience,” said Eoin O Suilleabhain, e-channel developer at Bord Gáis Energy.

“Some of our latest research shows that a large percentage of our customers use websites like Twitter and YouTube. Twitter played a big part in The Big Switch launch, and we see it part of our online strategy going forward.”

The team sparked on the novel approach of seeking extras via Twitter to take part in the filming next week via the Bord Gáis Twitter account ThebigswitchIrl.

The shoot takes place at 11am next Thursday at the Casting Couch, The Basement, 3 Fitzwilliam Square, Dublin 2. Applications will only be accepted via Twitter.

At a time when celebs like Ashley Kutcher and Oprah Winfrey are notching up ‘followers’ on Twitter, you never know who will apply for the job.

“Our marketing team are very switched on to digital media and all things online,” explained Nicky Doran, head of marketing at Bord Gáis.

“We see the online community, and especially bloggers, as a vital part of the marketing/PR mix. So far, the response on Twitter and IGO People to our latest initiative has been excellent.”

The ‘extras’ will be paid between €50 and €200, depending on what they do on the day.

The shoot will be managed by Bord Gáis’s digital agency Target Digital.

“The guys at Bord Gáis make our life very easy, as they know exactly what they want online,” said Darren Moffet, head of online at Target Digital.

“Since the launch of The Big Switch, Bord Gáis has established a very credible reputation as innovators within the online community.”

By John Kennedy

Pictured at the launch of Bord Gáis’s The Big Switch campaign was spokesperson, television personality, Lucy Kennedy, and Bord Gáis CEO, John Mullins