Universal Home Entertainment
Mamma Mia 2

It’s harder than ever to sell DVDs. So, we convinced ITV to turn an episode of the X-Factor into one great big launch party for the release of the Mamma Mia 2 DVD. In the first movie product placement in an ITV programme, we co-created the ABBA Week special.


The DVD market is declining rapidly (down 31% in 2018), placing huge pressure on releases to succeed.

Despite a 10-year gap since the first film, Mamma Mia 2 was one of the biggest theatrical releases of 2018. Universal hoped to make the Home Entertainment release as successful as the Box Office one.

The Big Idea:

ABBA’s music is the unique selling point for the Mamma Mia films. We needed to showcase this asset when promoting the film. We also needed scale. Enter the X Factor: TV’s hottest music property, and one that fit perfectly with our audience.

The weekend before DVD release, we created a partnership which viewers couldn’t miss. Having persuaded the X Factor producers that Mamma Mia and ABBA could bring real value, we were able to make something truly special.

Making it Happen:

Mamma Mia was fully integrated into X Factor’s semi-final night. As the first entertainment brand to receive product placement in an ITV show, this represented a media first for ITV.

The previous show had already announced ‘ABBA Week’, and ITV had reminded viewers in the week running up to it. The night itself featured heavy product placement, including: X Factor contestants watching the DVD on VT, contestants receiving a masterclass with Benny from ABBA, on-air appearances from the Mamma Mia cast, and an ABBA medley performed by the semi-finalists – judged by Bjorn from ABBA.

We supported this with a TV advert immediately following the medley, digital and social support around the show, dominance of the X Factor app with competitions, camera lenses and content, and social activity from the official X Factor account.

To drive pre-orders, we also brought a retail partner on board: HMV. They ran themed competitions to win tickets to the X Factor final in the weeks preceding the semi-final.


The show reached 5.3m individuals, with editorial coverage from MailOnline, Sun and Metro reached a further 5m individuals. Mamma Mia 2 sold over 1m copies before Christmas alone. It enjoyed the second-biggest ‘Week 1’ of any Home Entertainment release and stayed at Number 1 for six weeks!

“We are thrilled with the campaign. It was an unprecedented achievement to organically integrate Mamma Mia into one of the biggest shows on TV and an industry-first. The campaign has been truly amazing with lots of innovative thinking and delivered exceptional sales results.”

Poonam Chudasama (Head of Film & New Release, Universal Pictures Home Entertainment)

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