Mark Wahlberg and Ian Thorpe head new Optus push targeting small business

Mark WahlbergOptus is targeting small and medium-sized business (SMBs) with a new campaign partnering with actor and Wahlburgers fast-food chain founder, Mark Wahlberg.

The new drive, which also features Olympic gold medallist Ian Thorpe, will support the opening of 126 new stores specialising in offering support for SMBs as Optus works to position itself as a player in the business market alongside Telstra.

The campaign represents the first work for Optus by With Collective after a major reshuffle of its agencies.

Thrive PR + Communications, UM and Amobee all also worked on the campaign.

Wahlberg will be used to promote smaller businesses thinking bigger, tapping into his own heritage growing up in working class Boston, becoming a successful actor and then founding his own burger chain, Wahlburgers.

Rob Parcell, managing director of Optus Small Business, said the new initiative had been designed to offer businesses premium service.

“Mark absolutely epitomises what it is to believe big because he has done it. He grew up in working class Boston with plenty of hurdles, but through hard work had the courage to believe big and make things possible,” Parcell said.

Thorpe will be used to support a promotion offering small business owners the chance to go to the Rio Olympic Games in August.


“Many SMB operators are time-poor and want access to quality service around the clock. Whilst many are happy to visit our stores for a fast transaction off-the-shelf, we know others require a premium level of service to help them grow and we’re committed to delivering that,” Parcell said.

Thorpe’s partnership is the first stage of a broader approach and has been supported with a cheeky ad promoting the Olympian launching Thorpedo Pool Cleaning.

“Ian’s SMB involvement is the first stage of a whole of business ambassador program with Optus and we’re proud to have him on board,” Parcell said.


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