How telecom firm NOS and Havas Media Group united Portugal with a song from the 1940s

Havas Media Group won ‘Most effective use of video’ at The Drum Social Buzz Awards 2019 with its ‘Covering Portugal’ campaign for NOS. Here, the agency reveals the challenges faced and the strategies used to deliver this successful project.

The challenge

NOS was born from the merger of two of the biggest communications companies in Portugal in 2014. Its main problem was the perception Portuguese had of their broadband service: slow and not available across the entire country. Despite the fact that things had changed thanks to the new 1GB technology, the Portuguese people remained largely unaware of these improvements.

The Portuguese telecom provider NOS had a new product: GiGA, a 1 gigabyte per second high-speed internet connection for every Portuguese home. This was a great opportunity for NOS to change the perception about its service.

The strategy

We needed to go way beyond simple advertising or promotions – we needed to find something new that had never been done before by a mobile network carrier. We looked at our audience and stripping away anything to do with demographics, we identified one common insight: Portuguese people love their music, it brings them together and it connects them.

Portuguese music includes many different styles and genres. Each region can also have their own style and artists, even Fado Is different depending on whether it comes from Coimbra or Lisboa. But across all of Portugal, one song stood out and was known by every single Portuguese: ‘A Minha Casinha’ or ‘My Little House’, a song that was performed in 1943 by Herminia Silva, a very well-known and respected Fado Singer in the Portuguese film Comedy ‘O Costa do Castelo’. The song celebrate home, wherever it is, and it has a very special place in the hearts of Portuguese people.

We would use this heart-warming song to connect all corners of Portugal with high speed internet and prove NOS had the best and fastest coverage.

The campaign

We called upon 11 Portuguese artists, all of them with different musical genres and styles and from different locations in the country. Their mission was simple: connect Portugal! And to do so we gave them two things: The “A Minha Casinha” song and our new 1GB Network. We then asked each of them to create their own cover of the song.

They would work from the comfort of their homes and in collaboration thanks to the power of our 1GB Broadband. We wanted to show that we had coverage in the entire country, wherever your home is, and build a powerful narrative based on a song that would bring together an entire country and show Portuguese people that anything is possible when you have ultra-fast internet.

Artists included Ana Moura, an internationally recognized Fado signer; Throes + Shine, a dance and electronic music band; Antonio Zambujo, a singer and, songwriter of Cante Alentejano; and Conan Osiris, an unusual artist that mixes Fado, Kizomba, gypsy sounds, and a dash of dancehall!

We launched the awareness phase on social media to create expectations once the eleven songs would be revealed in streaming. We used OOH activations across the whole country, display campaigns, radio, TV and Cinema.

We produced seven duet videos with the artists and promoted them digitally on FB Instagram Stories and display. The videos showed the artists trying out beats and arrangements and were available on the NOS dedicated website.

In the second phase, each artist finally got to interpret their version. Every song was played live for the first time, between the musicians without streaming fails. Each musician set their studio at home and used only a webcam/tablet or smartphone to log on to the ‘Musical conference call’.

These private showcases were later used on TV as teasers. Afterward, NOS launched a two-minute TV spot showing bits of every cover and invited everyone to watch the complete eleven home video clips on their website. Everything without streaming fails or web signal loss.

The last phase was one of support with a countrywide OOH campaign reminding people about the eleven songs.

The results

The result was eleven new versions of ‘A Minha Casinha’ in different genres. We managed to bring back an old and very loved Portuguese song, back into contemporary pop culture.

Conan Osiris, one of the eleven, launched his musical career thanks to this campaign and went on to represent Portugal in Eurovision.

The campaign had an uplift of 52% in interactions and 138% increase in views compared to an average NOS campaign.

This campaign was a winner at The Drum Social Buzz Awards 2019. Click here to register your interest in next year's event.

Join us, it's free.

Become a member to get access to:

  • Exclusive Content
  • Daily and specialised newsletters
  • Research and analysis

Join us, it’s free.

Want to read this article and others just like it? All you need to do is become a member of The Drum. Basic membership is quick, free and you will be able to receive daily news updates.