Virgin Mobile Hires Mother to Help It Shed 'Pay as You Go' Image

Names Agency of Record as It Targets the Data-Obsessed

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NEW YORK ( -- Mother, New York has been named agency of record for Virgin Mobile.

Relaunch work from Mother, entitled 'Don't Be Stupid, Be Crazy,' targets 18- to 24-year-olds.
Relaunch work from Mother, entitled 'Don't Be Stupid, Be Crazy,' targets 18- to 24-year-olds.
Prior to this move, Virgin Mobile had worked with Publicis Groupe-backed Bartle Bogle Hegarty, independent McKinney and now-defunct independent Toy.

"We're restaging the brand," said Bob Stohrer, VP-marketing for Virgin Mobile. "It was a good time for us to look at many of the partners we've worked with across the years and Mother provided the best strategic and creative platform for us."

To build its prepaid business, Sprint acquired Virgin Mobile to join its existing prepaid player, Boost. To differentiate the two properties, Virgin Mobile is going after data-obsessed mobile users.

"We saw a real opportunity to go after data, text and social networking that nobody was exploiting," Mr. Stohrer said. "We had to shed the classic pay-as-you-go from the Virgin brand."

See Virgin Mobile's Crazy Life spot on Creativity.

Virgin Mobile is positioning itself as a prepaid service with a focus on flat-rate unlimited data, rather than minutes. Mother's work, "Don't Be Stupid, Be Crazy," targeting 18- to 24-year-olds, launched late last week.

This move reunites the brand and longtime marketer Mr. Stohrer with Mother, New York, co-founders Linus Karlsson and Paul Malmstrom, who launched Virgin Mobile in the U.S. while at Fallon in 2003. Mother also handled the account in 2006. In the meantime, Mother has handled events for the brand.

Virgin Mobile spent $8.5 million in U.S. measured media in 2009, according to Kantar Media.

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