‘Dumb Ways to Die’ and creating branded content that goes viral

King Content blog 'Dumb ways to die' and creating branded content that goes viral

If you haven’t seen or heard the viral sensation that is ‘Dumb Ways to Die’ then it’s time to fire up YouTube and take a look. This campaign has achieved amazing engagement and here’s why: it’s has all the elements required of effective branded content.

The quirky safety message, produced for Melbourne’s Metro Trains, has been a huge viral success, racking up nearly 50 million views on YouTube, over 3.2 million shares on Facebook and more than 100,000 retweets on Twitter.

The campaign swept the floor at Cannes, picking up 18 major awards for PR, film, radio and branded content among others.

More importantly, Metro Trains says it has done the job of raising awareness about rail safety – the rail operator reports near misses have fallen by nearly four per cent year on year.

So how does a cheeky, offbeat music video that marries cute cartoon characters dying horrible deaths with a serious public safety message become Australia’s most shared and successful branded content video?

We asked McCann national planning director Karl Bates for his take on the success of the ‘Dumb Ways to Die’ campaign and the evolution of branded content.

The writer behind ‘Dumb Ways to Die’, McCann executive creative director John Mescall, says great branded content needs to “have worth beyond the marketing message”. But it also needs to be valuable, audience focused, shareable and genuine – qualities this campaign has in spades. Find out how you can introduce these elements into your content marketing here.

Cannes Jury President for Branded Content & Entertainment, Avi Savar, says it’s critical that brands embrace new and innovative ways to connect with consumers.

“Content is about people stories; advertising is about product stories. A unique, original, powerful branded content program will connect people stories to product stories in a natural and organic way.”

Brands who can include these elements in their content marketing will be well placed to win trust, loyalty and business.

Nicole Stevens – Content Strategist


Leave A Reply