LONDON: UK consumers reacted positively to brands which recently permitted their television advertisements to be recreated using Lego characters and even found them more engaging than the originals according to new research.

YouGov used online advertisement dial testing, based on samples of more than 200 viewers of both the Lego ads and the originals, and found that for the four brands tested – the charity British Heart Foundation (BHF), comparison website, telecoms business BT and hotel chain Premier Inn – the Lego versions performed better.

The BHF ad registered the highest levels of recall for both ad forms – 32% for the Lego one and 86% for the original.

Comparable figures for Premier Inn were 31% vs 61%, for BT, 25% vs 74% and for 25% vs 58%.

But the BHF ad, featuring ex-footballer Vinnie Jones gruffly describing how to apply CPR to the beat of the Bee Gees' song Stayin' Alive, was the clear favourite, the original being cited by 60% of respondents and the Lego version by 53%.

YouGov noted the impact of celebrities, as second favourite Premier Inn (11% original and 8% Lego) included an endorsement from actor and comedian Lenny Henry.

And while Premier Inn may have been a distant runner-up in the popularity stakes, the proportion of viewers who "loved" it leapt fivefold when considering the Lego version over the original (from 5% to 24%).

But in terms of brand sentiment, BHF was far ahead: 15% of respondents said the original ad made them feel a lot more positive about the brand but this leapt to 33% when considering the Lego ad.

And while Premier Inn registered a similar scale of increase, the actual numbers were much lower, from 4% to 9%.

Viewers were hugely positive about the Lego ads, with around 60% saying they stood out and were more memorable than usual ads. Fully 73% declared that more brands should think of creative ways to advertise.

They were divided, however, on the likelihood of sharing such ads. Around one third (35%) had no strong feelings on the matter, while similar proportions agreed they would talk about or share the ads (34%) or would not (31%).

Data sourced from YouGov; additional content by Warc staff