‘Tis the season to say ‘yes’

Optus is bringing a new optimistic story to Australians this festive season via Special Group NZ – showing the great things that can happen from saying yes.

The new film follows an Australian glider, risking life and tail, for an ambitious surprise for its partner for Christmas. At the conclusion of the film, we see what our glider has gone to all this effort for – a pair of bassinets for its expectant partner.  We then reverse back to the moment of ‘yes’ that inspired these ambitious events – pinpointing the moment where our glider decided to turn optimism into action by starting a family of his own.

With populations of Sugar Gliders, Krefft’s Glider and Savanna Glider declining, Optus is using the festive season to raise much needed funds for their cause. Threatened by bushfires, and with limited public awareness of their plight, Optus is working with with the Australian Wildlife Conservancy (AWC) to raise in excess of $50,000.

The contribution will help the AWC deliver fire management across 100,000 hectares of natural habitat; remove feral herbivores to help create safe refuges for the gliders; and support the AWC’s scientific monitoring programme to ensure key threats to their survival are controlled.

Mel Hopkins, Optus’ VP of Marketing says: “Optus wants to play a part in affecting real change for the future of Australia, as we continue our journey to becoming Australia’s most loved everyday brand with lasting customer relationships. We’ve been part of Australia’s social fabric for 30 years, so it was important that a native species was front and centre of our campaign. We are encouraging Australians to fall in love with these wonderful creatures and join us in saving them in the most generous time of year – now that’s optimism in action.”

Australian Wildlife Conservancy CEO, Tim Allard adds: “Most Aussies know about wombats, koalas and quokkas – but there is little knowledge of this flying marsupial. The discovery that the Sugar Glider is not one, but three species, raises the alarm that there may be far fewer than previously thought and that the population may have declined by as much as 35 percent over the last 30 years.

“AWC is taking practical and effective action like fire management and feral animal control to address the key threats to the glider’s survival and restore their populations. This partnership with Optus will help teach Australians about the incredible diversity our country holds; and the funds will help us protect these threatened animals now and into the future,” Allard says.

Callum Walker, Lead Business Partner at Special, comments on the work: “This work has quite literally been months in the making – despite the hardships of border closures, lockdowns and shoot postponements we’ve been able to produce a heart-warming Christmas campaign that celebrates the power of yes.”

“This is the fourth iteration of our new brand platform “It Starts With Yes” which celebrates putting optimism into action. We’d like to thank Mel Hopkins and the entire team at Optus for their bravery and their vision, but more importantly their commitment to delivering work that makes a lasting impact and legacy.”

Since launch, little over a year ago, “It Starts With Yes” has become a stronger brand differentiator for Optus than both the long established brand colours and logo.

“Special are a highly valued agency partner. They’ve helped us create our new brand platform and deliver four incredible films off the back of it – but we’re just getting started.  We’ve got some really exciting plans in the pipeline that will continue to bring ‘It Starts With Yes’ to life, and allow us to demonstrate the optimism in every day,” says Hopkins.

The Optus Christmas campaign launched on November 14 with television spots, social content and Out of Home connecting everyday Australians to the plight of this unique – and adorable – animal.  This is the latest iteration of the acclaimed “It Starts With Yes” platform which Optus debuted last year.  Previous iterations have included a partnership with The Leukaemia Foundation to share the inspiring real-life story of Kara and Nikita, and “The Amazing Race” which shared an epic collaboration between children that harnessed the power of yes. 


Agency – Special Group NZ
Director – The Bobbsey Twins From Homicide
Production Company – FINCH
Animation Company – Flux
Sound –  Franklin Rd
Music – Level Two
Client – Optus

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