World’s first interactive ad-funded mobile soap opera launched

In a world first, 20:20 London, Incentivated and the COI have collaborated to launch THMBNLS, an interactive ad-funded mobile soap opera for the Department of Children, Schools and Families.

THMBNLS follows the lives of six teenagers and raises awareness of sexual wellbeing. The twenty two weekly episodes will be available exclusively via the mobile internet and will be free to download.

Viewers register online at which can be accessed via mobile banner ads placed across the six operator portals; 3, O2, Orange, T-Mobile, Virgin and Vodafone. The first of the weekly thirty second episodes was released on Friday 9 January. Viewers are reminded to watch the next episode by text message or vCalendar entries they have previously downloaded to their phone. The vCalendar can be downloaded to activate the handset’s alarm function, thereby avoiding the cost of additional SMS reminders.

THMNLS is a made-for-mobile soap opera which provides viewer engagement. Viewers can interact with the show and many of the episodes will be personalised. Their names will appear in characters’ mobile phone books featured in the plot, on posters and graffiti featured in soap opera, and they can sign-up for voice messages from TMBNLS characters. Viewers can also vote on issues and dilemmas faced by characters in the soap to direct future story line.

In a campaign first for the UK, THMBNLS is free to receive. Following negotiations between Incentivated and the five UK mobile networks, all data charges are zero-rated, including SMS alerts and WAP browsing sessions for viewers on contract and pay as you go plans.

THMBNLS is being promoted with mobile advertising, web advertising and a PR campaign.

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