Australia’s Foxtel Knocks It Out of the Park With Real-Time Creative Campaign

July 2017

Foxtel and its agency, Mindshare Australia, won over sports fans with innovative video display ads featuring highlights from live sporting events. The real-time campaign was a home run, driving considerable lifts in clicks and conversions.


+33% increase in click-through rate (CTR) vs. traditional ad formats on mobile

+20% increase in CTR vs. traditional ad formats on desktop

-68% decrease in cost per upgrade

The Challenge

Watching your favourite sports team live and sharing moments of celebration with other fans is a thrilling experience. To a great extent, technology has brought that experience into our living rooms. Australia’s Foxtel, a company that offers sports and entertainment TV packages, wanted to use the web to tap into that energy and excitement and gain new customers.

Foxtel and its agency, Mindshare Australia, understand that sports fans look to complement live TV broadcasts with relevant online content—from post-game highlights to behind-the-scenes interviews and analysis. Among YouTube sports viewers, 57% say they watch related video content before sports events, and 47% watch sports or fitness videos on YouTube while watching live sports on TV.

The challenge was clear: Bridge the gap between the excitement of the live sporting events and people’s engagement and hunger for timely online content by serving up the moments that matter in targeted ads.

The Approach

Serving real-time highlights to sports fans with Google Marketing Platform

Foxtel had been running standard ad campaigns, using pre-produced creative to promote its U.S. sports packages. But with people exposed to literally thousands of marketing messages on a daily basis, Foxtel and Mindshare knew they had to do more to get attention. Looking to create something unique and engaging, they teamed up with Google Marketing Platform1 to produce display creative featuring near-live highlights from NBA and NFL games.

To create the ads, Mindshare built a custom template in Google Web Designer containing the Foxtel branding and CTA copy. The rich media creative was then trafficked through Studio. When a big moment happened in a televised game, the highlight clip was uploaded to a private YouTube playlist. A proprietary script written by Google Marketing Platform monitored the playlist for updates, pushing new content to the ads, which were served to users via Campaign Manager, in as quickly as one minute.


Leveraging affinity segments based on lifestyle and interests, third-party audience sport segments, and contextual sports pages, Display & Video 360’s targeting capabilities allowed Foxtel to serve ads across devices to sports fans at peak times in the run-up to the weekend games.

Foxtel ran expandable rich media video display ads featuring near-live sports highlights.

The highlight clips surprised and delighted users, enticing them to click on the ads, which then expanded to reveal a 15-second brand spot for Foxtel Sports. Users were finally rewarded with the full one- to two-minute highlight video. Most importantly, all ads drove users to a sign-up page for Foxtel Sports.

Foxtel scores with innovative video display ads

The innovative video display ads exceeded Foxtel’s expectations, leading to sign-ups and upgrades from existing subscribers. Compared with traditional ad units, CTRs on desktop and mobile devices saw an uplift of 20% and 33%, respectively. Furthermore, using this format on mobile to target existing subscribers drove a 68% decrease in cost per upgrade compared with the total campaign display average.

Thanks to Google Marketing Platform's end-to-end solution, Foxtel was able to create a true broadcast-to-banner platform. The campaign’s success has reinvigorated Foxtel to continue innovating and creating real-time ads that subvert people’s expectations and earn their attention.

The Products

Google Web Designer
Display & Video 360
Campaign Manager
Affinity audiences


The Results
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