Needn't Be A Drama

TV Licensing

Turning a functional message into an entertaining one.

TV Licensing is on a mission to create a nation of willing licence fee payers. Their existing TV ads were over five years old and needed refreshing to help modernise the brand. This new campaign would need to be similarly long-lasting and bear repeat viewing.

While it is unlikely anyone is going to love paying for or managing their TV Licence, we could make them feel a lot more positive about the experience by showing how TV Licensing makes it as convenient and easy as possible. 

The further creative challenge was that while your TV License is a gateway to a wealth of entertainment and quality content, it’s difficult for TVL to use talent or content from shows to promote their service due to copyright limitations.


Our idea, 'paying your TV licence needn’t be a drama' uses well known drama tropes from iconic TV series and films. 

We knew that the campaign messaging would be stronger if viewers genuinely thought the spots were real scenes from a drama.

In order to do this, we studied production techniques true to each era and genre – retro sci-fi, 80s soaps and contemporary thrillers.


We used similar cameras, colour palettes, shot composition, casting techniques and even incorporated era-specific production errors.

The campaign, which features a range of well-known actors from dramas on the BBC and beyond, aired across TV, radio and social.

Red Bee worked passionately and professionally throughout every step of the campaign development. They pulled in a wealth of talent across every aspect of the creative and production process who were impressively skilled and focused – but also down to earth and willing to work as a team. It was definitely the most fun I have had in years working on a campaign. With Red Bee nothing was too much trouble; schedules were clearly defined and kept to, as were budgets. Managing the process was almost effortless.

And the end result exceeded our expectations. The campaign went live in October and the feedback has been overwhelmingly positive. I am exceptionally proud of the finished product and of the team at Red Bee who created it for us. 

Nicola Ager, Head of Marketing, TV Licensing