Canada's Bell Express unveils aggressive campaign

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MONTREAL--The battle among cable distributors, satellite distributors and wireless TV distributors for Canadian viewers has intensified with the launch of a multi-million dollar national campaign by the Bell ExpressVu satellite distributor.

The campaign takes on cable TV distributors head-to-head, targeting cable customers with humorous one-to-one talks by actors culminating inthe theme line, 'You're going to love TV again."

The series of 30-second and 60-second spots, scheduled to run until the end of the year, star TV actors from the past, such as Charlene Tilton from "Dallas'' and Jimmy Walker from "Good Times''. The message is that cable customers today often feel there's nothing good to watch on TV while, in the past, there were a lot of shows that everyone looked forward to watching. The solution, the campaign suggests, is to subscribe to Bell ExpressVu offering more choices and better value.

French-language ads are similar but with an ordinary spokesperson rather than a TV star.

Advertising is handled by Cossette Communication-Marketing.

ExpressVu is also promoting a special offer: It will give a free satellite system to anyone who wants to switch from Starchoice grey market or C-Band units. Promotions is handled by Blitz, a division of Cossette.

ExpressVu currently offers 143 video channels and 37 music channels. It has more than 280,000 subscribers, adding about 30,000 each month, and expects to reach more than one million by year 2002.

Copyright September 1999, Crain Communications Inc.

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