DirecTV Now finally gets promo campaign

"Creed" star Michael B. Jordan is participating in DirecTV Now's advertising campaign.(AT&T)

After months of flying below the promotional radar with its virtual MVPD service, AT&T has created a series of commercials featuring "Creed" star Michael B. Jordan to advertise DirecTV Now.

The first one features the actor, who played Apollo Creed’s son in the most recent Rocky sequel, shedding life’s entrapments—the cable box, the couch, the walls to his swanky study, his wedding ring and even his pants—with BBDO-produced spot emphasizing the ability to “freely” watch DirecTV any place and on any devices customers choose. 

Other spots feature Jordan creating a virtual snowstorm by shredding cable contracts, illustrating the Droste effect with mobile devices, and finally, blowing up a cable box

“This marks the first time we’ve dedicated an entire national advertising campaign to DirecTV Now,” said AT&T spokesman Steven Schwadron. “In our previous campaign starring Mark Wahlberg, we had one spot dedicated to DirecTV Now. This campaign is completely dedicated to showing the benefits of the service. We are excited to be working with such a young, fresh talent as Michael B. Jordan. He has tremendous range—humor, sadness, dramatic. And you’ll see a lot of these come through the campaign.”

The spots were created by BBDO and will run exclusively on the internet. 

“We launched the new DirecTV Now ad campaign on primarily digital platforms because it is one of the key ways people discover and use this product,” Schwadron added.

AT&T launched DirecTV Now on Nov. 30 and the platform grew quickly, with the operator claiming 200,000 subscribers in its first month. However, viral threads about early technical trouble caught AT&T “flat-footed,” the company admitted. 

AT&T executives said their focus has been on getting the virtual platform’s engineering up to snuff rather than advertising and promotion. As a result, growth of the service’s user base has been negligible during the first half of 2017.