Event TV: Argos yetis kickstart the festive season

Argos: festive spirit with yetis
Argos: festive spirit with yetis

Three fully animated yetis were spotted skating at speed through the streets of London, fast tracking festive cheer and gifts to unsuspecting passers-by.

The activation, which took place yesterday (3 November) and which will continue into next week, marks the launch of the ‘Christmas Yetis’ campaign from digital retailer Argos, which is unveiling its Christmas advert tonight. Featuring five neon yetis, the advert shows the creatures hurtling through the streets of a snowy town on ice skates, delivering Christmas gifts at extraordinary speed.

Research from Argos suggests that Christmas couldn’t come sooner, with almost one in five (19 per cent) surveyed believing Christmas will be the perfect distraction from the bleakness of 2016, and a sixth (16 per cent) looking forward to it more this year than ever before.

In response, Argos sent its Christmas yetis out onto the streets of the UK to kick-start the festive feeling. Each measuring up to eight feet tall, the gift-giving yetis became the centre of attention at several locations across the capital, including the festive ice rink at the Natural History Museum, Millennium Bridge, Westminster Bridge and the City of London, with more spottings expected across the country in the coming weeks. Pro skaters animated the speedy yetis from the inside, including George Southall, who is recognised as one of the best amateur freestyle skaters in the UK and professional ice hockey player, Kevin McGlynn. The stunt activity was executed by agency W.

The yeti gift giving is set to continue with the retailer calling on people to get into the spirit and snap a picture of themselves with the in-store yetis or wearing a downloadable yeti mask, available from the Argos website. By sharing it on Twitter using #ArgosYelfie, they can be in with a chance of receiving a festive surprise.

Stephen Vowles, marketing director at Argos, said: "Our yeti advert is designed to capture the spirit of excitement and anticipation surrounding Christmas. Fun loving and friendly, these larger-than-life, quick as a flash yetis colourfully bring to life the role that Argos hopes to play in the Christmases of families nationwide – and the skill, speed and precision that make us market leaders, with our super-speedy, same day Fast Track Delivery and Fast Track Collection services. Given the year Britain has had, we hope our loveable yetis bring enjoyment to thousands of British households this December – reminding us of the joyous, fun-filled experience the festive season should be." 

The ‘Christmas Yetis’ advert is based on the concept of speed, adrenaline and excitement. Based on the folklore that yetis move twice as fast (35 – 40 miles per hour) as the average human (15 miles per hour) and even quicker than the fastest human foot speed on record  (Usain Bolt 100m, 2009, 27.8 miles per hour).

A team of special effects experts from Animated Extras built the hyper-realistic yetis over a period of three months at the world-famous Shepperton Studios in Surrey, England. 

Argos' previous activations have included targeting commuters with an interactive game at London Waterloo station.

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