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Live Test Series Integrated Campaign

Industry: Automotive & Services
Style: Minimalism
Describe the campaign/entry:
Volvo Truck's objective was to attain maximum interest in the global launches of its new models: Volvo FH, FM, FMX, FL and FE. Without a global media budget at its disposal, this was quite a challenge. And one that was not simplified by the diversity of the target audience ranging from CFOs to truck drivers.

It became clear to us that the various purchasers seek information from a wide circle of colleagues and contacts including friends and family. This became central to the strategy: to go for a much wider audience in order to reach the purchasers.

For this to work we needed a number of spectacular ideas that would attract the attention of the press, only then could we afford to reach out. We set up a series of product tests that would demonstrate specific features of the trucks in a way that would thrill and intrigue just about anyone. The films of these live tests would generate viral hits and impetus for the press to air and publish them. And so the PR strategy had its focus point: the phenomena of these daring product tests, carried out for real, in front of the camera, available for anybody to see on the

100 million people have watched the Volvo Trucks live test films so far. – There have been over 20,000 reports about the videos in the media worldwide, including all major TV channels, worldwide. All in all to an earned media value of €126 million.

Describe the brief from the client:
How do you get people all over the world to talk about trucks? That was the challenge when Volvo Trucks introduced five new models within 12 months.

They wanted to stir up excitement for all their new features, not only among customers, but also among a wide range of influencers like truck drivers, friends and family..The insights of the planning done before the campaign stated that the target audience is a diverse group of purchasers. Mostly, these purchasers are not the people using the trucks. And so they seek help and advice from a wide network of contacts: drivers, colleagues, workshop acquaintances,financial advisors, competitors, customers, friends and even family members.

Its estimated that this degree of publicity represents 126 million euros in earned media value.

Followers on Facebook has increased from 16,000 to 330,000.

YouTube subscribers increased from 3,500 to 90,000.

Unique visits to Volvo Trucks' websites in Europe has doubled from 175,000 to 350,000 per month.

The videos have +100 million views on YouTube and have been shared nearly 8 million times.

There have been over 20,000 reports about the videos in the media worldwide.

According to a survey, almost half of the truck buyers who have seen the launch videos say that its now more likely that they would choose Volvo at their next purchase.

1/3 of the Truck buyers who saw the communication have either contacted a dealer or visited for more information.

Part of the PR strategy was to give media hints about the coming Live Test films. By doing this the fan base and the interest from media increased September 2013, the president of Volvo Trucks became the star of the next film: The Hook. This film showed Claes Nilsson standing on the new construction truck as it was dangled over the sea.

Two weeks later The Hamster was launched. To demonstrate Volvo Dynamic Steering, a hamster steered the truck out of a quarry.

Now with each new live test, the press release is able to build on the growing success while exploring the limits of what can actually be done with a Volvo truck.

October. Live Test no 5. The Chase. A city truck tries to escape from a herd of raging bulls in order to demonstrate its manoeuvrability.

November. The Epic Split was launched. Featuring JCVD, demonstrating Volvo Dynamic Steering.

The Situation:
Without a global media budget, we needed to launch 5 new trucks on a global market. The target audience is a diverse group of purchasers.

Mostly, the purchasers are not the people using the trucks. And so they seek help and advice from a wide network of contacts: drivers, colleagues, workshop acquaintances, financial advisers, competitors, customers, friends and
even family members.

So no matter how small the the core target audience looks on paper, we saw no option but to go wide in order to penetrate the vast number of people involved.

The Strategy:
The PR strategy initially used the viral interest being shown for the films as leverage. Press releases were sent to a large number of bloggers, publishers and news channels. For each new film, the message was adapted to suit the segment and theme of the different media channels, so that the most relevant angle was used.

The creative idea was to carry out an extreme test of a product feature, in a live set up, where the outcome could never be guaranteed. In this way we could thrill and engage the widest possible audience while still providing a valid demonstration of the new truck. But viral marketing and social media alone would not be enough. To reach a critical mass in the trucking industry and among those who have a relationship to the trucking industry we needed the press to build momentum. Both mainstream, automotive and truck specific varieties.

Brief Explanation
The idea is based on the insight that the most effective way to launch a new truck and reach the core target group, would be to go wide and attract a broad audience. But we didn’t have a huge media budget for a global advertising campaign in consumer media, which meant that viral content marketing and social media combined with PR was the only way. So we created Volvo Trucks’ Live Tests, a series of campaigns based on YouTube, testing new features. This was highly relevant for the core target group, but at the same time spectacular and entertaining enough to attract a broad audience. Objectives: Maximize awareness of Volvo Trucks and the new range of trucks. Create a series of campaigns in such a way that it activates the Volvo brand values and consideration among the core target group, which should lead to an increase in sales.Reach: In total, the launch campaign has had an earned media value of €115,000. It has been shared 8 million times online and has had more than 100 million views on YouTube (plus an extra 50 million views in spoofs). There have been more then 20,000 editorials published in global media.Impact: The impact on the core target group was massive. 69% of Volvo customers and 34% of non-customers mentioned spontaneously that they had recently seen communication about/from Volvo. After hearing the truck brands, the recall of the communication was 81% among Volvo truck customers and 56% among non-customers. 85% of Volvo customers and 61% of the non-customers were aware of the new truck range. Consideration: After the core target group had seen the communication, between 40-50% (depending on the campaign) of the truck buyers were “significantly more likely” or “more likely” to consider a Volvo truck in future purchases. And last and maybe most important, sales. In the fourth quarter of 2013 (after the campaign period), sales increased by 24%, making it Volvo Trucks’ best year ever. “Volvo Trucks has exceeded our expectations and contributed to the Volvo brand increasing its market share in Europe to historically high levels”. Olof Persson, President and CEO of Volvo Group.
Confidential Information
OBS! The attached documents are for Cannes Lions Juries ONLY!It may NOT be published or shown in any other context.
Chief Creative Officer:
Art Director:
Production Company:
Other credit:Creative Team: Tobias Nordstrom, Britta Malmberg
Music & Sound: Wooly Bully by The Sham & Pharaohs, Only Time (Ryan, Ryan, Ni Bhraonain) Performed by Enya, Adelphoi Adelphoi, Plop Plop, Plan8 Plan8, 750MPH 750MPH
Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity 2015
Grand Prix Creative Effectiveness
Creative Effectiveness
Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity 2014
Gold Cyber
Integrated Multi-Platform Campaign
Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity 2014
Gold Cyber
Automotive Products & Services
Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity 2014
Gold PR
Integrated Campaign led by PR
The One Show 2014
Gold Pencil Integrated Branding
Consumer Campaign
The One Show 2014
Merit Digital Direct Marketing
Social Media & Viral Marketing
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