In the middle of February, Facebook launched a campaign called Friends, that was all about reinforcing the importance of friends in people’s lives and underlining Facebook’s role building and keeping friendships.
It was not unlike Chair, in its “deep and meaningful” narration designed to tug at emotions…ok, FOMO…and get more people to think of Facebook as their gateway to popularity.
There were three TVCs, Friends, Girl Friends and Firend Requests and each told its story over an instrumental version of a popular songs: Umbrella by Rihanna, Close To Me by The Cure, or Like A Prayer by Madonna.
The 60 second spots ran in the UK with an British voiceover. It was the first time Facebook had aired a TVC in the UK. The ads were supported by Friends posters…
…and this is where J. Walter Thompson London’s idea enters the story.
Walter Thompson London and Age UK have launched an advertising campaign, which responds to the current Facebook Friends posters that are visible across the UK at the moment.
The adverts mimic the Friends poster artwork, but instead of using a young person and the word, Friends, each wears the words, No Friends, over a portrait of a solitary older person.
According to Age UK, one million older people in the UK go more than a month at a time without seeing or speaking to anyone.
Marianne Hewitt, head of brand at Age UK, noted, “At Age UK we know how devastating loneliness can be for older people. Being lonely not only makes life miserable, it is also really bad for our health, making us more vulnerable to illness and disease. It’s time we took loneliness seriously as a threat to a happy and healthy later life. We need to do more to support older people to stay socially connected: this is a big part of our job at Age UK and everyone can help by being a good friend or neighbour to the older people they know.”
The campaign promotes the services provided by the Age UK network. People are invited to text £3 which could help provide older people who feel lonely with companionship, support and advice.