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UKTV record the best share of market in 10 years.


UKTV were finding that marketing campaigns for their crime channel brand alibi were not generating enough impact. Data from regular research projects and brand trackers were fed to the marketing team who used those findings to create campaigns.

However, the channel was just not seeing the overall scale of the brand increase, or brand sentiment shift to the degree that they wanted. UKTV needed a fresh perspective on retaining and recruiting viewers.


We designed an approach rooted in System 3 and narrative research to understand and map consumer imagination – where brand equity is built and choices are made.

Our narrative analysis tool allowed us to gather qualitative stories from viewers about their behaviours and expectations of crime dramas at the scale of a quantitative survey. Grammar analysis revealed the story arc: starting point, journey, the twists and discoveries, and emotions felt along the way. All of this fed into the second stage, a System 3 analysis. Our System 3 tool measures implicit word associations, positive/negative emotions associated with each word, experience and brand, and produces a visual display of how viewers perceive the crime TV category.

The outputs of this approach revealed narratives that could lead people toward or away from an alibi viewing occasion. We then tested the scale of impact of these narratives on consumer behaviour through an immersive testing method.


The findings have fundamentally re-framed the channel’s marketing objectives. The team now builds creative briefs off the brand’s emotional benefit of offering ‘the thrill of the ride’ over its functional benefit of offering new crime drama.

This internal shift also changed how UKTV measure brand success on alibi. The focus has moved away from increasing perceptions of new and exclusive programmes, to tracking perceptions that the brand is thrilling and exciting, has personality, and offers content with twists and turns.

The results so far have been remarkable with alibi posting its biggest share since 2016 last year, and boosting the average number of times a viewer engages with the channel to levels not seen since 2014. Subsequently the +13% year on year uplift for its share of the market, has ranked as the best result for the channel in 10 years.

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