Mariamz

Forever Wild remix viral videos to prompt action on rhino poaching

Posted on: February 26, 2012

People spend a lot of time watching frivolous, ridiculous video online – so Ogilvy Cape Town developed an innovative ‘YouTube interventions’ campaign for Forever Wild based on this insight.

Forever Wild is aiming to gather support from the public and various stakeholders to help fight against rhino poaching in South Africa and save the rhino from extinction.

For the ‘YouTube interventions’ campaign over 60 frivolous trending videos (and some classics) were adapted to include messaging encouraging people to join the fight against rhino poaching and sign a petition.

Targeting people who actively searched for silly viral videos, these ‘Trojan Horses videos’ forced viewers to confront the reality of how they spent their time online and do something positive for a cause.

With PR horror stories in mind of where brands have attempted to subvert trending terms for their own gain… this was a somewhat risky strategy. The video mentions some people were indeed annoyed by the manipulation. But for such an important cause, Ogilvy could get away with it… this once at least.

I’m not sure YouTube would be amused if this tactic is widely repeated, but this campaign shows how understanding people, their viewing habits and specific platform capabilities can be utilised for innovative campaigns that drive awareness and social action.

The results: Ogilvy claim they gained over 300,000 YouTube views, over 11,000 Facebook likes, and petition signatures increased by almost 400%, enough to present a strong case to Congress later in 2012. And all this with $0 spent.

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