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M&C SAATCHI, Sydney / OPTUS / 2018

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How do you get sports-obsessed Aussies to follow a game they have no personal connection to? Luckily the answer had been hiding in their blood all along.

80% of Australians have British heritage, so what if we gave them the connection to an English Premier League team they’ve always needed? Using the power of we gave sports fans the chance to trace their bloodline back to England and specifically the COUNTY that is home to a premier league team. Now a ‘casual sports fan’ knows that his people come from Manchester and it's highly likely that his great great grandfather went for Man U.

We created a connection between the two by using the strongest bond one experiences - family connection.

On discovering their team distant relatives quickly became hard-core fans with a crash course on their long-lost EPL team. They were rewarded for reconnecting, with history lessons, slogans, team songs, star player stats and of course, a free trial to watch their team live on the Optus network. Once a new fan got a taste of the EPL they were hooked.


As soon as someone entered their surname the Ancestry database was put to work. Our algorithm combed through millions of census and military records and traced the surname back to its COUNTY of origin.

Once the origin was assigned the algorithm then went through geographic records to pinpoint the closest EPL to that location.

Our fan was then told their team and given an in-depth induction to the team that's been hiding in their bloodline for hundreds of years.

Millions of data records with the source being a mixture of military and census records dating back to 1871.


Fancestry was of huge success. Not just because it was a platform that engaged many people, but because it generated commercial success.

Not only did we link Optus and its subscribers to the best of soccer, 63% of our newest fans took out a subscription.

Of those visitorys, 63% unlocked the free trial to Optus sport Since launch, helping the Pay TV network gain over 40,000 new subscribers.

Tens of thousands of Australians took advantage of the free trial to watch their new team and over 167,000 signed up for Optus sports packages.

Need to check results


Optus Sport, the new broadcaster of the English Premier League in Australia, needed to get local sports fans to watch the game in order to grow subscriptions.

But how do you get sports-obsessed Aussies to follow a game they have no personal connection with?

In partnership with Ancestry, ‘Fancestry’ was born; an interactive digital platform that creates a genuine connection between Aussies and the EPL; one that runs deep in their bloodline. Through robust data, sports fans can discover the EPL team they were born to support, and can now experience the game with real passion.

Go Man U!


Attracting true EPL fans to the platform would be easy. But it wouldn’t be enough. Sizing the market proved that In order to sufficiently grow Optus’ customer base we needed to grow the fan base of the EPL in Australia. Starting with the lowest hanging fruit, multi-sport fans who casually switch on the game would generously double our audience. We needed to convert them into die-hard EPL fans.

Our insight unlocked a truth to sports fandom. A truth our audience knows all too well. In order to feel invested in a sport, to fall in love with it, to enjoy every minute of it, you need to feel truly connected to it; its history, it’s players, it’s people.

This meant we had to find a meaningful & genuine way to help people find their team - knowing that if people have a team to support, and a reason for doing so, they would feel more invested in the EPL and therefore more likely to become a customer.


Gaining the rights to the EPL was a huge commercial opportunity for Australia’s 2nd largest Telco, giving them an instant edge over competitors. Giving existing customers free access to Optus Sport would not only build Optus’ credentials as an entertainment provider but tempt non-customers who are interested in the EPL to switch to an Optus contract.

But the EPL has forever struggled to gain interest in Australia. Aussies treat local codes like a religion; worshipping teams and praising the players. Their connection with sport runs deep. Baptised into a code at birth, this team loyalty is passed down from generation to generation. How does an international sport beat the bond between an Aussie and their family tied team? Their code?

We needed to create a genuine connection between Aussie sports fans and the Premier League in order to bring new customers to Optus.

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