The Top 50 Campaigns Of 2012 (So Far)
Since we’ve passed the halfway point of 2012, we have seen a number of fantastic campaigns from some of the top agencies across the world. Since they come and go in quick succession, we thought it would be worth rounding up the best campaigns of the last six months. Whether they’re viral videos, Facebook campaigns, or real-world stunts, there’s a varied list here so if you want to remind yourself about those campaigns that happened earlier this year, or see if there was any that you missed, then read on.
Coca-Cola Zero Video Puzzle
Agency – Publicis e-dologic Israel
Turning a TV commercial into a live-action brainteaser, users were required to solve the puzzle on their Facebook page in the quickest time possible. The only way you could solve it is to watch the video over again until you solved it. The result: players watch the ad 23 times on average and received over 350,00 views in the space of two weeks, meaning that the ad (and brand) was fresh in everyone’s minds long after they solved the puzzle.
Um Like Um Balao (One Like, One Balloon)
Heineken Brazil came up with a silly, but great idea to increase the number of fans on its Facebook page: every time someone liked the page, a green balloon was blown up and placed in their office. In less than one day, the campaign generated thousands of new likes and eventually filled up the entire room.
Donimo’s Think Oven
Agency – CP+B
Wanting to find out what its customers think, Donimo’s launched a Facebook app called ‘Think Oven,’ a place where fans could suggest and influence ideas. With the ideas covering all areas of the business including products, customer interaction, online presence and quality of service, the brand found a new way to engage with fans and keep them loyal.
â‚¬2 In Motion
Agency – KolleRebbe
To help support youth projects in Africa, Asia and Latin America, German charity MISEREOR created an interactive machine that, once you inserted â‚¬2 into it, would play and show you how your donation gets things moving. It would then take a photo of you which would be posted onto Facebook.
Agency – McCann Erickson Istanbul
Using Facebook’s photo album as a flip book and taking some inspiration from Smart Argentina’s version on Twitter, Volkswagen Ticari Arac uploaded a short cartoon that you could watch by holding down the ‘right’ button on the keyboard.
Mercedes Interactive Billboard
Agency – JCDecauxGlobal
An outdoor campaign from Mercedes in Berlin. To show how much space there is in their vans, JCDecaux placed twelve interactive billboards in underground stations, and to activate them, passersby had to take out their electronic car key – it didn’t matter what brand of car it was from – and point it in the direction of the billboard. What came out was anyone’s guess
IKEA Metro ‘Apartments’
Agency – Ubi Bene
To show how effective its furniture is in tight spaces, IKEA created five small ‘apartments’ smack bang in the middle of a busy subway station, and had volunteers live in them for a week. The result was that passersby got to see how effective IKEA’s furniture is when living in cramped spaces.
Salta Beer – Rugbeer
Agency – Ogilvy Argentina
We seriously doubt that this would be approved over here for health and safety reasons, but it’s a different approach to the ‘complete action to get reward’ approach. This time, rugby fans in Argentina were asked to tackle the vending machine to get an ice cold beer. Again, it wouldn’t be allowed over here, but it certainly caught our attention when it first came out.
MINI Test-Drive Store
Agency - DDB Paris
Instead of making people come to them to see its cars, MINI in Paris decided to turn ten cars into mobile stores which drove around the city and let people take them on a test drive. Because they could reach any part of the city, the campaign was able to reach people directly (when they’re on a test-drive) and indirectly (through the advertising on the car).
Cake Dispensing Bus Stop
Agency – 101 London
Let’s be honest, free cake is enough to make any campaign a success. The campaign was for UK brand Mr. Kipling and over 500 cakes were dispensed across the UK.
Intel Ultrabook – Hardest Punch
Tying in with how powerful its laptops are, Intel asked the people of Indonesia to hit a punching bag as hard as they could to win a prize. The first person to throw a powerful punch would unlock a vault containing an Intel Ultrabook. Simple idea, but effective in getting attention.
NAB Bank – Honesty Shouldn’t Go Unrewarded
When you do a good deed, you don’t expect to be rewarded or recognised for it. You just expect to go on with your life like nothing had happened. NAD Bank in Australia decided to recognise those who are honest by setting up a situation that rewarded people for returning lost property. The resulting scenario is both funny and gets the message of trust across.
Daimler Mercedes eBall
Agency – BBDO Germany
Everyone knows the rules of Pong so how about playing a real-world version of the game played by electric cars? When it’s a game that anyone could participate in, it becomes a brilliant way to learn how responsive and mobile electric cars are.
Coca-Cola Love Vending Machine
Agency – C-Section
Another Coke-Cola campaign, this time couples in Istanbul were asked to prove their love if they wanted to get two free cans of coke. While people were originally reluctant to participate, those that did obey the sign got a lot of enjoyment out of it.
LYNX Anarchy – The Invisible Ad
Agency – Soap
LYNX/AXE is usually known for creating steamy ads and this one in an abandoned house in Sydney is no different. Replacing the windows with LED screens, normal passersby wouldn’t notice anything, but put on a pair of LYNX sunglasses and all would be revealed.
IKEA Domestic Space
Agency – 303 Group
You will find that IKEA will feature regularly here since they run some clever campaigns. This time, the furniture store advertised that they wanted to rent out space in people’s homes, but not for a person or any furniture. Instead, it was for its catalogue which measured 224 x 192 mm. People could rent their space out to the catalogue and IKEA would pay them rent, except the cheques were redeemable in an IKEA store, meaning that they’d get the money, but would probably spend it and more on goods in the store. Clever.
Evian Smart Drop Project
Agency – BETC Euro RSCG Paris
To help improve sales of bottled water, Evian gave out free devices that let you order water from your fridge and have it delivered straight to your door. Connecting to your WiFi, all you have to do is sign up on the site, provide your credit card details and all you need to do is push a button and have fresh water delivered directly to your door.
Puma – Usain Bolt Shopping Game
Taking inspiration from the fastest man in the world, Puma launched a campaign where the faster you buy your shoes, the greater a discount the consumer would receive. Without much time to think, consumers would buy the shoes quickly and would hopefully lead to more sales.
The Donation Army
Agency – Ogilvy & Mather
To highlight the plight of deforestation, OroVerde equipped a number of trees across the city of Bonn with cardboard signs and wooden hands to make it look like they were holding the signs. The result is that it looked like the trees were homeless and the very sight would have caught the attention of passersby.
Waternet Peeing Game
Agency – Achtung!
To stop people from peeing in the canals during Holland’s national holiday, Queen’s Day, Waternet created a game out of four stalls that turned peeing into a race. Not only did it encourage people to not pee in the canals, but it encouraged them to do it quickly.
Coca-Cola Cheering Truck
Agency – Del Campo Nazca Saatchi & Saatchi
Since not every football fan is going to make the World Cup in Brazil in 2014, Coca-Cola traveled across all of Argentina to record the chants and cheers of thousands of football fans. All the cheers are meshed into one large song which then gets played whenever there’s a match on.
LG Smart Thief
Agency – Y&R Not Just Film
A brilliant example of how concept and execution can make a good idea memorable. Originally released as a random video released, it was actually a viral video made for LG to advertise their TV. We won’t spoil the ending in case you haven’t seen it before, but you will find it clever.
MINI – The Best Test Drive Ever
Agency - Butler, Shine, Stern and Partners
MINI offered one fan the chance to create their own advert using only six words. Matthew Foster’s description – Stewardess, Salt Flats, Paratroopers, sushi & Falconer – was chosen as the winning entry. With him as the star, this is the commercial MINI made from it.
Coca-Cola CCTV Cameras
When we hear about CCTV, we usually associate it with negative events. Coca-Cola decided to use the security footage from numerous cameras to show feel good moments so ‘honest’ pickpockets and ‘attacks’ of friendship feature heavily and will leave you feeling warm inside.
Tippex Bear and Hunter (Part II)
Agency – Buzzman
Tippex had a successful campaign in 2010 when it let you save a hunter from a bear using Tippex. Now the sequel, which celebrates its second birthday, allows you to type in a year and see the Hunter and Bear in different time zones. Some funny interactive games and videos are there to be found if you have a spare few minutes.
TNT Benelux (Turner Broadcasting)
Agency – Duval Guillaume
Belgium TV station telenet came up with is probably one of the most elaborate stunts for an advertising campaign so far this year. Entitled “A Dramatic Surprise On A Quiet Square,’ the campaign involved a button located in the middle of a quiet square that, when pressed, will make things…a little less quiet. Let’s just say there’s a very good reason why this has 35 million views and counting.
Peugeot – Let Your Body Move
Agency – BETC Euro RSCG
Silly premise aside, Peugeot’s interactive video let you choose the outcome of a story and got almost four million views. The video was to promote its 208 range and was perhaps more memorable for the times you chose the wrong option and seeing the protagonist fail.
TicTac Bad Breath
Agency – Ogilvy Paris
Flash mobs has had a bit of a resurgence this year, appearing in a vast number of campaigns. This campaign is an effective way to get the brand’s message across, which is everyone is affected by your bad breath.
A brilliantly hilarious advert from Durex which shows how its new product can help both partners to climax at the same time. Even if this claim isn’t true, the way it gets the message across is fantastic.
Agency – McCann Erikson
A one second campaign shouldn’t be effective, but this video meant that users had to play it over and over again to get the message. Doing this actually highlighted the symptoms those with OCD go through every day and in turn was both effective and was played back multiple times.
Getty Images – From Love to Bingo
Agency – AlmapBBDO
We’ve seen numerous stop-motion video throwing images together, but this effort from Getty Images is one of the most polished examples we’ve seen.’From Love To Bingo’ shows 873 images in little under a minute yet manages to tell a story about love and life without a line of dialogue.
Agency – Leo Burnett Warsaw
A practical use for a marketing concept that hasn’t gotten a lot of love recently. The QR code was given its best use yet by becoming a personal profile for festival goers. Scan the code to get info about a person and find out what they like doing. A brilliant way of breaking the ice as well as advertising the Heineken brand.
Draw Something Intern
Agency – Muse
Remember when Draw Something used to be cool? Back when it was, Dutch agency Muse used the app to hire its latest intern, by using the app, those applying were asked to draw whatever random word was presented to them and show off their creative skills.
Teaming up with Shazam, Amnesty International created a new app called ‘The Sound of Amnesty’ which presented a special message any time a song couldn’t be detected. The message talked about how those suffering injustices around the world couldn’t be heard either and presents a call to action. The campaign led to over 150,000 petition signatures in under a week, representing a 500% increase on the same campaign the year before.
Agency – Blue Hive
One of the rare campaigns that used Instagram as their basis, Ford asked users across Europe were asked to upload photos for different categories, each category associated with the brand’s Ford Fiesta. With over 16,000 different photos uploaded during this period, there were numerous prizes given out, the main one being a brand new Ford Fiesta.
Starbucks AR Valentine’s Day cups
Considering Starbucks’ earlier success with augmented reality during the Christmas period, it was always going to use it a second time. This time, it was for Valentine’s day, where users could download the brand’s Cup Magic app, scan their cup and send a message to any of their loved ones as well as a Starbuck card eGift. Considering how loyal people are to the coffee chain, this campaign added a bit of life to an otherwise normal cup of coffee.
Agency – Agencia DM9DDB
One of the biggest mistakes you can make after a break-up is to ring your ex immediately in a vain attempt to get back together. Rarely does it work so drinks company, Guarana Antarctica, created an app that stops that from happening. From reminding you of some of the reasons why you broke up to shaming you on Facebook if you do make the call, it was effective in generating publicity for the drinks company.
In Russia, illegal parking is a major problem so to curb the problem, newspaper The Village launched a new app where users could name and shame. Starting off by taking a photo of the car, image recognition reads the number plates to find the driver before shaming them on banners across Russia. The only way to remove these ads is to share the picture with your friends, further shaming yourself.
Agency – BBDO Argentina
By far one of the most original uses of Twitter we’ve seen in a while. Going onto its profile and using the J and K keys, you could watch a cartoon being played by scrolling down through the tweets. The campaign was to show that electric cars can fit into the tightest of spaces, and what tighter space could you get than 140 characters?
Agency - Duval Guillaume Modern
Since everyone knows the rules of Scrabble, the game was given a new twist thanks to the medium of Twitter. With 100 randomly generated characters, you must write the highest scoring sentence you could think of before tweeting it. Brilliant as you’re required to tweet to win which in turn promotes the product, Scrabble Trickster.
Twitter Vending Machine
Agency – Cow Africa
Exactly what it says on the tin, this vending machine, which was set up in Cape Town, dispenses iced tea to customers if they tweet it.
Agency – VVL BBDO
Celebrating the arrival of 2012, Belgium agency VVL BBDO created an app called ‘Best Tweeshes’, which gathered those happy new year tweets together to create something different. Those tweets that had the hashtag #tweeshes was assigned a point on a world map where it originated from and created a musical melody for people to listen to.
IKEA Multi-Kitchen View
Agency – Instinct BBDO
Wanting to show off its kitchen solutions, IKEA Russia created an online story where you could view things through the viewpoints of any of the characters featured. So you could look at the world through the eyes of a couple, their guests, the dog and even the goldfish, all while the film plays in real-time and stays in-sync whenever you change viewpoints. The purpose of this was you could interact with any of the furniture shown in the video and resulted in 540,000 solutions discovered during the first three months of the campaign.
Designer’s Recruitment ads
Agency – Jung von Matt
Recruitment campaigns can be boring so agency Jung von Matt did something a bit different when it started looking for top designers. Since all designers use Lipsum.com to get dummy text for their mock-ups, the ad was inserted into the text they copy and paste so that its ad shows up in their designs themselves.
Philips Shaving AR campaign
Agency - OgilvyAction
We did consider putting this in mobile since it technically involves augmented reality (AR), but either way, it deserves to be included in this list. To encourage Taiwanese men to grow facial hair so it could sell more grooming products, Philips got a number of barbers and stylists to promote their non-smartphone AR technology by letting customers drink tea, except on the mug was a drawing of a mustache or goatee showing men what they would look like with one. Very silly, but also very enjoyable.
Agency – Leo Burnett Iberia
To promote the first season of the TV show Alcatraz in Spain, instead of creating a 30 second ad to promote it, agency Leo Burnett Iberia created a fast food delivery service which brought the finest cuisine you could expect from a prison. A different idea that’s worth it just for their take on the customer service helpline.
Kotex Personalised Gifts
Agency – Smoyz Creative
As part of its ‘Inspiration Day,’ Kotex sent out personalised gifts boxes to 50 women. Nothing original there except that these gifts were created by using the info from their Pinterest profiles. After creating the gift boxes, they then sent the women an image of the gift and to claim it, all they needed to do was repin the image on their profile. Almost everyone involved posted about their prize and the campaign was shared across Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and, of course, Pinterest.
Torrent Blood Donation
Agency – SmartNewSolutions
Making a link between torrent sharing and blood donation, SmartNewSolutions created the first torrent campaign where downloading the files is done piece by piece (the same principle as donating blood as all the blood donated is eventually pooled by type). As downloading means sharing, the campaign would appeal to torrent users and would encourage them to donate blood.
FIAT Don’t Drink and Drive
By far one of the most effective drink driving campaigns we’ve seen in a while, despite its short nature. Instead of resorting to horror scenes to get the message across, FIAT used a beer can to promote the message “Now you see it, now you don’t.” For 15 seconds, it certainly gets the message across.
UNIQLO Pinterest Banner Campaign
Agency – Firstborn
Perhaps giving a clue as to how advertising could work on Pinterest, UNIQLO pinned long images together to create a seamless ad on the site and take up the entire screen. It required a large number of people to pull it off, but the result was worth it, if only to try something different on what has been the fastest growing social media site for a while.
Hellmann’s Point of Sale Marketing
Agency – Ogilvy Brazil
Hellmann’s in Brazil had a problem: people were buying its products, but only using it when they’re making sandwiches, missing out on other recipes. So the company decided to give out recipes not on the products themselves, but on the receipts of those who bought Hellmann’s mayonnaise. So when someone paid for Hellmann’s, it triggered software that scanned their entire list, check a database and printed a recipe on their receipt that they could later use. A great campaign that personalises the experience for customers.