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Channel 4 talent takes center stage in landmark campaign for Costa Coffee

Channel 4 and Costa Coffee have launched a campaign as the broadcaster continues to broaden its offering to advertisers.

The ‘Overheard at Costa’ campaign sees a number of Channel 4’s most recognizable hosts and actors having in-person conversations in the coffee chain’s stores to highlight the connection that comes with a shared beverage.

Sandi Toksvig, Joe Thomas and Omari Douglas all feature in what is also the first advertising work from Curate Films writer and director Simon Evans, whose previous work includes the lockdown-based comedy Staged.

4Sales and Mediacom UK collaborated on the campaign, while the idea was developed through 4Sales’ creative arm PL4Y working with The Writers Room, a department of Curate Films.

Kirsten Gillard, agency and client sales leader at Channel 4, said: “We’re really excited to be collaborating with Costa Coffee. Featuring some of our much-loved comedic talent, the resulting campaign is funny and engaging and we know the brand will positively benefit from that association.”

In late October the broadcaster also announced it had signed a deal with Lithuanian online marketplace Vinted as a sponsor for soap Hollyoaks, and as part of this Vinted branding would appear on the show.

It comes as the broadcaster comes under pressure to prove that it remains financially viable in the age of streaming services and video on demand (VOD) subscriptions. As a consultation on the public broadcaster’s future closed, the IPA backed Channel 4’s ability to generate sufficient advertising revenue.

“Channel 4 is a driver of continued and often first-to-market innovation, which makes the commercial TV landscape more competitive and more attractive to advertisers,” it stated.

“This is evidenced by the success of its market-leading broadcaster video on demand platform All4. As the TV market rebounds post-Covid, its world-class leadership directed by its unique remit is set to deliver and sustain market-beating growth amid this rise in internet-enabled viewing.”

Of the world-first partnership with Channel 4, Matt Flint, senior brand and strategy manager at Costa Coffee UK&I, said: “We love the thought that the secret ingredient that powers the Channel 4 machine is regular catch-ups over a cup of Costa coffee. We are delighted to share this content with viewers and show the joy that can come from taking a little time out of your busy day to enjoy chatting to a friend over a great cup of perfectly crafted coffee.”

Meanwhile Tom Curtis, executive creative director for Mediacom Creative Systems, said: “It’s a rare thing getting to work with talent like Simon Evans and the incredible Channel 4 stars that provide the voices for this campaign. Simon has brought a unique and very funny perspective to the scripts, with the celebrities offering their own natural charm and wit to their delivery. It’s been a pleasure to see the partnership develop. Time for a coffee.”

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