1. GoViral and AOL Networks combine ballet and trucks for Volvo

The Ballerina Stunt

How do you create a viral hit? Forbes recently calculated the chance of a video going viral to be around 0.0001%, so Volvo Trucks needed something a bit special for its first product launch in 15 years. So how do you up the chances of success?

Quality and planning. 

GoViral wasted no time drafting in some top talent, including an Oscar nominated director (Henry Alex Rubin) to add some Hollywood shine to the nail-biting video, which featured slack liner world champion Faith Dikey walking a line between two fast moving Volvo FH trucks along a motorway before they entered a tunnel, in order to demonstrate the truck’s precision driving system.

In order to create traction for the video, it was made available on 60,000 sites globally, and pushed out to a variety of social influencers, driving 2.4 million YouTube views within 48 hours. As the campaign progressed it also racked up an impressive 53,000 Facebook shares, and saw Google searches explode – from 5,690 to 608,000 in one week.

2: Essence uses Google+ to bring families together at Christmas

We’re huge fans of Google Hangouts here at Econsultancy, but the format hasn’t quite made it into mainstream consciousness yet, which meant that Essence had quite a challenge on their hands as they tried to promote G+ video chat to the family market.

Luckily Christmas was on the way, meaning they had a great opportunity to show how G+ could connect families over the holidays (With a little help from Wallace, Gromit and other Aardman favorites). 

In order to target the ad campaign effectively, Essence used IP-targeting to identify users who were visiting UK news sites and portals from overseas IP addresses in order to show the video to people who were spending time away from their home and families.

This was combined with a series of homepage takeovers (and of course, Google’s own display network) to generate over  four million  views of the Wallace & Gromit hangout on YouTube across 4 EMEA markets. 

3: Havas Media and Penguin get Jamie Oliver to the top of the charts with Instagram

Jamie Oliver’s 15 Minute Meals – Cook it, Snap it, Share it

When Jamie Oliver released his book ‘30 Minute Meals’, the social media sphere resounded with the noise of disgruntled gourmands as they discovered that things took longer to prepare than the label promised.  

This meant that Havas Media needed a quick way to prove that the even quicker 15 minute recipes fulfilled their promise, and where better to prove it than in the instant world of social media? 

 Havas had Oliver record a video version of two recipes, and challenged the cook’s Facebook followers to cook them in 15 minutes.  

This was then shared across Twitter, asking people to ‘Cook it, Snap it and share it’ via Instagram with the hashtag #Jamies15MM, with the results shared back to Facebook via a dedicated app.  

The best snaps were then featured in an Out-Of-Home campaign, with pictures appearing on posters at busy transport terminals and on the Tube, promoting the book to busy people during the evening commute (just when they were heading home and dreaming of that takeaway). 

The campaign helped ensure that Oliver topped the Christmas bestseller charts for the fifth year in a row. 

4: Immediate Media and BBC Worldwide launch Top Gear magazine interactive edition

Top Gear’s Interactive Edition launched in December, replacing a previous PDF version. Cars move and make a noise (as does Jeremy Clarkson) meaning Immediate Media had the perfect content for an interactive magazine.

Top Gear has a reputation for providing award winning content across multiple platforms, so the online magazine had to be good.  


While not the first interactive magazine, Top Gear’s combined a range of interactive elements that have made full use of the technology; the interactive content wheel, full screen galleries, html overlays and rotating 3D cars are all bespoke content produced by Engine Creative, and this is teamed with HD video shot by the TV team, providing a great all-round experience for users. 

Sales and revenue have grown by 61% since the interactive edition launched in December and almost 50% of sales coming from the US App store, a key market for the brand.

5: M2M for Momentum Pictures scare their audience for Sinister

In the recent past a range of horror films have taken a similar approach to their marketing – vox pops, night vision, people jumping out of seats… if you show people being scared the film must be scary, right?

For the release of Sinister, M2M took a different approach, rather than just showing people being scared, they created an experiment to measure audience fear levels during the film, and asking audiences: “Could you Survive Sinister?”

In a cinema of 400 Professor Brendan Walker of The Thrill Laboratory hooked 5 test subjects up to instruments measuring heart rate, skin temperature and perspiration. Then Sinister began to play… by the end one participant had broken their heart monitor!

The experiment proved how intense Sinister was, and it also highlighted content that could be used  to create suspense and scares among the audience (and hopefully draw their attention away from competing high-profile horror release ‘Paranormal Activity 4’).

This is a great example of tailoring content in an agile manner, based on real-time social reactions from the target audience. The experiment was key to success and really captured users imagination captured the public’s imagination. While only 5 were tested 3,000 put themselves forward. Over 19 million people saw the experiment, and Sinister delivered £6.6m at the box office (230% above target). 

Don’t miss The Digitals

These are just a few of the inspiring and innovative entries that have made The Digitals shortlist this year. Check out The Digitals Yearbook to see more innovative content, or head to TheDigitalsAwards.com to book a place at our awards ceremony later this week >>