Zip TV launches with eight-minute Honda interactive ad

LONDON - Honda, a pioneer in the field of interactive television advertising, is the launch advertiser on Zip TV with an eight-minute video.

Zip TV, which is finally launched this week after a difficult birth, is the first interactive advertising television channel. Honda is one of the 11 advertisers backing the venture, along with COI Communications, Procter & Gamble, BT and Unilever.

The new Honda video is divided into chapters, so that viewers can enter the video loop at various points. It promotes the Honda Jazz and Honda Civic commercials, centring on the MotorShow Live and revealing some of the people behind the brand. The video was created by Zip TV in conjunction with BBC Broadcast.

Donna Barradale, managing partner at Zip TV, said: "This is not simply an extended version of the linear advertisement, but content that viewers will find interesting, informative and rewarding".

Zip TV will work as a "virtual" channel, providing the content when viewers press the red button while viewing an interactive ad through the usual TV channels. Viewers will return to scheduled programming once they have seen the interactive ad.

Market research, including focus groups, will look at the creative output of the channel and explore new ideas and concepts to encourage people to tune in.

Simon Thompson, head of marketing at Honda, said: "Our partnership with Zip TV is our first step in exploiting the creative potential of interactive TV and we will use these results to home and refine our future campaigns on the channel."

Honda ran its first interactive advertising campaign more than a year ago, using its award-winning "cog" spot, created by Wieden & Kennedy. Viewers could press the red button on their remotes to order a DVD with a film about the making of the ad and information on the Honda Accord.

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