Heinz and Reckitt Benckiser ditch Captcha for branded games


Heinz and Reckitt Benckiser are among the first brands to sign up for Future Ad Labs’ new advertising format, PlayCaptcha.

Watch this video presentation explaining how the tool works below;

The partnership will see Heinz and Reckitt Benckiser use Future Ad Labs’ PlayCaptcha to increase brand engagement and improve overall consumer sentiment and product recall.

To tool places a game-element into security features, used to force site visitors to rewrite distorted words to prove that they are human and not a computer bot.

For example, the Future Ad Labs team has developed a PlayCaptcha for Heinz that invites visitors to pour a virtual bottle of Salad Cream onto a sandwich, instead of being forced to decipher hard to read text.

For Reckitt Benckiser, the team has developed a PlayCaptcha that persuades visitors to clean a virtual dirty penny by dragging it into a bowl of Cillit Bang.

For both Heinz and Cillit Bang, PlayCaptcha delivers engagement rates many times higher than traditional digital advertisement formats, while providing a better user experience for web page visitors.

Early research between June and July 2013 conducted by Vizeum’s insights team in collaboration with Future Ad Labs and Heinz, indicate that by replacing the frustrating CAPTCHA user experience with something that visitors actually enjoy, results in a positive reaction to the brands featured in the PlayCaptcha.


In fact, more than 9 out of 10 respondents (91%) found PlayCaptcha to be a better user experience than standard word-based CAPTCHAs, with another 9 out of 10 users (90%) recalling the Heinz product following the completion of the task.

The Future Ad Labs initiative solves the problem of low engagement rates and banner blindness experienced by many advertisers.

PlayCaptcha will also have a positive impact on the brand-publisher relationship because it provides the opportunity to generate revenue for the advertiser through the CAPTCHA process, which until now has been an unmonetisable part of every website.

The partnership with Heinz and Future Ad Labs was facilitated by The Bakery, a Tech City investment and accelerator business that works with some of the world’s biggest brands and their agencies.

“The success rates of PlayCaptcha are undeniably impressive and we are thrilled to be one of the early adopters of such innovative technology”, commented Ian McCarthy at Heinz. “Through our partnership with Future Ad Labs and its dynamic interactive advertising product, PlayCaptcha, we aim to deliver a fun and engaging experience for our consumers, while also increasing brand sentiment. We look forward to many future successes working with the team at Future Ad Labs.”

“We’re delighted to be partnering with such renowned and respected global brands as Heinz and Reckitt Benckiser”, said Howard Kingston, CEO and Co-founder of Future Ad Labs. “By utilising a creative solution that avoids the negative experience of CAPTCHAs, consumers can immerse themselves in the brand without interrupting their online experience, which helps build brand awareness. Research also shows that PlayCaptcha generates far higher engagement rates than standard digital advertisement formats including banner ads. We look forward to an ongoing partnership with brands such as Heinz and Reckitt Benckiser, who are innovators in their field, and will continue to deliver market leading advertising solutions to their brands.”

“We identified early on that this could be an important format for the future and were very keen to get Heinz involved. Having seen the research it has shown that this has had not only a positive impact on consumers but has shown to deliver cut through for FMCG brands in a cluttered online environment”, said Piers Taylor Managing Partner, Vizeum

Future Ad Labs continue to sign up new brands and websites for PlayCaptcha, the first of a number of products to be launched by the company this year.


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