Brand Film Festival London 2017: the winners' showcase

The strategies behind the 13 of the films winning gold awards in PRWeek and Campaign's inaugural Brand Film Festival London.

Six films were named 'best of the best' at yesterday's inaugural Brand Film Festival London, and a further 13 given gold awards. Click here for the full list of winners


Brand: Hostelworld

Project: Hostelworld presents: in da hostel with 50 Cent

Company: Lucky Generals

Gold award in Viral

 SUMMARY OF ENTRY 

Synopsis

In this film, world-famous rapper 50 Cent shows us round a hostel in Barcelona in a parody of his star turn in MTV show Cribs.

Brief

As the world’s biggest online platform for booking hostels, Hostelworld needs to address outdated perceptions of its venues. Specifically, it needs to show a new generation of young travellers how clean, safe and luxurious modern hostels can be.

Who better to show how luxurious hostels have become than 50 Cent – a man known around the world for his expensive tastes, who had recently declared himself bankrupt? This topical angle would guarantee PR and social sharing of our film and allow us to deliver all the hard-hitting product messages we needed while still going viral.

Results

"In da hostel with 50 Cent" was viewed 22.4 million times and generated 1.5 million social interactions.

It drove 463 pieces of coverage in 23 markets, with a combined media circulation of 1.2 billion. And, as a result, Hostelworld received almost a million clicks through to the dedicated landing page, where it showcased all the great features that modern hostels offer.

Best of all, the film changed perceptions of hostels. Sixty-nine per cent of 16- to 34-year-olds interviewed said the Fiddy video made them more likely to use Hostelworld in the near future (source: Research Now brand tracker).

 JUDGES’ COMMENTS

"Very clever and nails the task they set about to achieve. Witty without being slapstick and clever use of talent that appeals to the target audience."


Brand Lynx/Unilever

Project Men in progress

Company TMW Unlimited

Gold award in Issues and Crisis Management

 SUMMARY OF ENTRY 

Synopsis

The "Men in progress" series included episodes such as "Boys don’t cry". The nine short episodes were created by TMW Unlimited for men’s grooming brand Lynx and seeded across social media. 

The series was designed to reinstate Lynx as a barometer of modern masculinity. Every perspective on what it is to be a man today was given an opportunity to be aired – from hating football to being defined by it, from refusing to show emotion to crying at a gig, from loving how they look to loathing it. 

Brief

Lynx has always been a brand synonymous with men. But, increasingly, guys were seeing it as a relic of 90s "lad culture". In fact, our extensive social listening suggested that Lynx had become the butt of its jokes – a cultural shorthand for immaturity and desperation. 

Just 17% of young men said they "aspired to be like" the men that Lynx had heroed in its advertising of old. 

The challenge for TMW Unlimited was to help make Lynx relevant to young guys in 2016 who want to present themselves well but certainly aren’t purely concerned with the pursuit of girls. 

Results

Although the films are still being released, the series has already achieved a combined organic reach of more than 650,000, with a further 1.4 million paid views. The films have also garnered press attention, with combined PR reach of more than 109 million. 

Crucially, the videos have already created a real shift in how guys talk about Lynx on social media. When someone makes a joke about Lynx immaturity, we’re increasingly seeing them being corrected by the community – with reference to this film content.

 JUDGES’ COMMENTS

"I like this ‘honesty’ approach to film-making – certainly feels current and is engrossing. Real, authentic and beautifully filmed content dispelling myth and displaying human truth. Great strategy for Lynx to align to ‘real men’. Best set of videos in the bunch."


Brand Omega

Project Every split second counts – the history of Olympic timekeeping

Company Precious Media

Gold award in Brand Documentary

 SUMMARY OF ENTRY 

Synopsis

"Every split second counts" is a unique one-hour feature documentary created to communicate Omega’s role as official timekeeper of the Olympic Games and its position as one of the brands within the Olympics partner programme. 

Told through accounts of the changing technology and experiences shared by top Olympians such as Michael Phelps and Gail Devers, we learn of the intricacies of the ever-evolving operations and measurement of timekeeping. In addition, viewers are treated to stories of nail-biting Olympic finishes governed by the split second, such as the dramatic 100m butterfly final between Phelps and Milorad Cavic in 2008.

Brief

Our brief was to create a freestanding TV documentary that would give detailed and emotional insight into Omega’s significant contribution to the evolution of Olympic timekeeping. 

The documentary needed to reflect Omega’s identity as a market leader in precision, luxury and the aspirational lifestyle, as well as the heritage of Omega’s partnership with the world’s premier sporting event. 

The aim was to maximise brand visibility and amplify reach, all done purely on its own editorial merit. Omega had paid no licence fees and had no commercial commitment to the respective TV channels.

Results 

In total, the film was broadcast in 107 countries by more than 20 TV networks and within Delta Air Lines’ in-flight entertainment system, delivering more than 16.3 million viewers and $4.9m in media value for Omega.

The documentary delivered a terrific showcase for Omega in seamlessly weaving the brand into iconic sports content with contextual relevance and reinforcing Omega as the Olympic timekeeper of the world.

 JUDGES’ COMMENTS

"World-class brand content here. Brilliant. Engaging and professional content to support what could be perceived as a narrow subject matter."


Brand Persil/Unilever

Project Free the kids

Company MullenLowe London

Gold award in Consumer Goods and Retail

 SUMMARY OF ENTRY 

Synopsis

We wanted to raise awareness of the recent decline in kids’ outdoor time. Our creative idea was to put the time into context by dramatising a shocking but true statistic: children nowadays spend less time outdoors than maximum-security prisoners. And what more dramatic way to highlight the issue to parents than by filming a mini-documentary set inside a real prison in Indiana?

Brief

We wanted this film to launch our "Dirt is good" movement. Our objectives fall into two categories: 

Attention

• Get the nation talking about what is happening to kids’ lives.

• Engage parents with the statistic and push them to take action.

Action

• Drive parents to the "Dirt is good" website, which features more than 100 tips and ideas for playing outside with kids.

• Drive parents and teachers to sign up their schools to Outdoor Classroom Day – an event run by one of our partner organisations in which schools teach all their lessons outside for one day (6 October 2016).

• Get parents to pledge to spend more time outside with their kids the following week.

Results

Attention 

• 115 articles generated around the world.

• Retweets from influential bodies including Greenpeace and Public Health England.

• 13.1 million impressions earned from campaign interaction.

• Social engagement rate 33% higher than the Unilever benchmark.

• Before the campaign, 38% of people thought that kids spend less time outdoors than prisoners. After the campaign, 74% did.

Action

• More than 17,000 visits to the website, with a dwell time in excess of two minutes – more than twice the Unilever campaign benchmark.

• More than 1,500 schools signed up and took part in Outdoor Classroom Day 2016 – more than triple the previous year.

• 82% of 500 UK mums surveyed planned to get their kids outdoors more the following week.

 JUDGES’ COMMENTS

"Really clever analogy but on a genuine insight people should care about. Great production value and emotionally engaging."


Brand: RNLI 

Project: Respect the water

Company: LADBible, OMG and Drum

Gold award in Brand Documentary

 SUMMARY OF ENTRY 

Synopsis

Sadly, about 200 people die in British and Irish coastal waters each year, and 85% of them are men.

The RNLI, the charity that saves lives at sea, wants to halve this shocking figure by 2024. Three short documentaries were created that told real-life stories from young men who have encountered the dangers of the water.

Brief

We wanted to reach 16- to 39-year-old men with water-safety advice in a relevant and engaging way, and LADBible offered a fantastic, credible channel to do this. We wanted to create impactful content that would encourage men to think again about how to act around water and provide advice so that they know what to do to in an emergency, keeping themselves and their mates safer around the water.

The content needed to be delivered in a tone that appealed to its intended audience editorially, yet with a consideration for the heritage, history and tone of the RNLI.

We used real-life stories from relatable people and created content that challenged reckless behaviour, educating a young audience and encouraging them to look out for others near the water.

Results

"Respect the water" was the most successful branded campaign of 2016 in LADBible’s community. The reach alone is significant, having exceeded 4.2 million views (1.5 million paid, 2.7 million organic) on LADBible’s Facebook page to date.

There were more than 40,000 shares, "likes" and reactions, and 3,000 comments. 

The sentiment was overwhelmingly positive, with many tagging their friends to warn of dangers, therefore helping the RNLI save more lives around the coast.

 JUDGES’ COMMENTS

"Great response to brief. Contemporary feel and impactful in this short form. Nice use of slow-mo footage, music and colour grading across a great set of films. Powerful and perfect for the intended audience."


Brand: UBS

Project: Nashira: peace and prosperity in Colombia’s matriarchal village 

Company: Vice

Gold award in Brand Documentary

 SUMMARY OF ENTRY 

Synopsis

UBS, one of the most traditional banks in the world, turned to Vice for a fresh approach to the thought leadership that sets it apart.

The result was a commissioning programme called Unlimited (http://unlimited.world) – a six-month series of content attempting to answer the disruptive question: does wealth make us rich any more?

This submission is one of the crowning films in the series. Ripped from the headlines and pulling no punches, it dives into a female-led commune in Colombia, shot in October last year at the time of the referendum on whether to sign a controversial peace agreement to end the country’s bloody civil war.

What can a country that has been paralysed by violence learn from matriarchal leadership, a new approach to eradicating poverty through gifting land and a fervent desire for enterprise and self-sufficiency?

Brief

The brief to Vice was simple: create debate around new understandings of "wealth".

Unlimited was set up in the summer of 2016, bringing together a collaboration of diverse publishers to explore answers to life’s big questions.

Issues explored included: do we actually own anything any more? Are wealth and possessions different? Have we reached "peak stuff"? And what legacy do we want to leave to the next generation?

Results

To date, the film has had 5.9 million views globally across Vice’s sites, Facebook and UBS’s owned channels, driving reach of and engagement with the film itself and UBS’s Unlimited platform. The film has created debate among our audience surrounding key themes of wealth, feminism and the global economy, as well as several column inches furthering the discussion across other consumer media outlets.

 JUDGES’ COMMENTS

"This is just in a different league to the other films. It’s intelligent, beautifully crafted, culturally relevant: a story worth telling, told well. Vice nails it again: powerful story, beautifully made."


Category: Corporate

Brand: BP

Project: Running man

Company: Psona Films

Synopsis

"Running man" is the third ad in BP’s "Energy within" campaign. The film features para-sport champion sprinter David Behre and reveals his drive and determination following an accident involving a train in 2007 in which he lost his lower legs.

The transformational CGI treatment featuring David’s race against a freight train, coupled with footage of his punishing training regime, seeks to show how the human spirit is the most powerful energy of all and leads people to achieve the most remarkable things.

Brief

The film aimed to build awareness of BP’s partnership with the International Paralympic Committee and support for the Paralympic movement, demonstrate that BP and the IPC make for a good partnership, and show that BP cares deeply about communities and society at large. This was to be achieved through driving online views, social engagement and creating a strong uplift in brand favourability.

Results

We achieved 19.8 million online views, 5.1 million social engagements and a 25% average uplift in brand favourability.


Category: Animated

Brand: Sainsbury’s 

Project: The greatest gift

Company: Abbott Mead Vickers BBDO

Synopsis

The 2016 Christmas film tells the tale of a dad who comes up with a plan to make sure he can be with his family for Christmas. Animated by Sam Fell, the story is told via an original, humorous song, The Greatest Gift Is Me, voiced by James Corden and composed by Flight of the Conchords’ Bret McKenzie. 

Brief

The key objective was to win the hearts and minds of the nation. We created a new piece of entertainment, a song, a new food product, an activity for families to share and a partner that would use the money raised to help families stay together. The second objective – just as important – was to ramp up our credentials and make Sainsbury’s the destination for Christmas food. 

Results

Sainsbury’s had a record Christmas week, with more than 30 million customer transactions at stores and more than £1bn of sales. The ad had more than 31 million views across YouTube, Facebook and Twitter. In terms of driving integration with our food messaging and make the investment work harder, Sainsbury’s tracking suggests we achieved both objectives.


Category: B2B

Brand: D&AD

Project: Project precious

Company: Lucky Generals

Synopsis

This film shows how we reminded creative leaders that nothing matters more than a D&AD Pencil by stealing them. 

Brief

There are hundreds of creative awards, but agency budgets will only stretch so far. Our job was to reverse a multi-year decline in entries to the D&AD Awards by convincing creative leaders that nothing matters more than the chance to win a Pencil.

And, to remind our audience how precious D&AD Pencils are, we set out to steal them from agencies.

Results

We took the Pencils in mid-January, just as agencies were starting to think about which awards to enter in 2016. The combined reach of all the agencies, industry leaders and publications that tweeted about the missing Pencils was 1.8 million. The D&AD website recorded a reach of more than 13 million in the campaign period.

We achieved the core objective comfortably. Entries to the D&AD Awards were up 5% in 2016. 

All of this on a budget of about £50,000.


Category: Corporate

Brand: HSBC

Project: Accuracy vs truth

Company: HSBC

Synopsis

Following fresh allegations of financial misconduct and with staff morale at an all-time low, HSBC commissioned a series of films that go straight to the heart of this issue – by interviewing the people who commit financial crime. In this film, Noel Quinn, one of HSBC’s most senior executives, travels to California to meet Mark Morze, one of the US’s biggest fraudsters. 

Brief

In 2012, HSBC was fined $1.9bn by the US government for failing to prevent customers from laundering money and breaching sanctions. Since then, HSBC has committed to opening an honest conversation about the realities of financial crime. The objective is to reinvigorate the anti-fraud message by showing senior staff meeting convicted financial criminals.

Results

The response was immediate. The film was distributed on the HSBC intranet, where it has been viewed 40,597 times to date. This is among the biggest audiences ever achieved for internal video content at the company. "Accuracy vs truth" was the most discussed item at HSBC’s "Exchange" employee meetings around the world in the months following its publication. 


Category: Healthcare

Brand: SCA Redfit

Project: Blood

Company: Abbott Mead Vickers BBDO

Synopsis

The film shows images of women in quick cuts. We see that each woman is taking part in physical activity and each is bleeding from injury. Joan of Arc, face bloodied in battle, holds her sword aloft. "No blood should hold us back" appears on screen. 

Brief

Bodyform is the number three player in the UK feminine-hygiene market. It faces a challenge to build relevancy for young women – with a budget dwarfed by the market leader. Cost-effective content offered an opportunity to engage the audience. It was critical that the activity was emotive and distinctive. The objective was to give Bodyform the highest online share of voice in the category during the campaign period.

Results 

The month after launch, Bodyform’s share of voice online reached 74%, compared with 5% previously. Online brand mentions spiked, with Bodyform overtaking Always. In the first two weeks of the campaign, Bodyform’s Facebook page saw an uplift of 973% in traffic. 

On an investment of £107,000, the campaign achieved a reach of more than 600 million and 13.8 million impressions. 


Category: Best Post-Production

Brand: John Lewis

Project: Buster the boxer

Company: MPC

Synopsis

"Buster the boxer" is the story of a girl who loves to bounce. When a group of hand-animated, photo-real CG garden animals discover the new trampoline in the garden, they slowly learn the joy of bouncing too. The action is observed by the family dog, who finally has a go himself on Christmas morning. 

Brief

As with every year, John Lewis’ objective was to land the strategy of thoughtful gifting in an original way. This year, we wanted to land the joyful nature of Christmas and, ultimately, drive sales during one of the busiest retail periods of the year.

Results

The result is not just a successful TV ad but a film that sets the bar for post-production. With 64.4 million views online, the spot became the most-viewed Christmas ad worldwide on YouTube – a 95% increase in views year on year. The spot also received 1.3 million shares compared with 375,000 last year. It generated more than 8,000 unique press articles.

John Lewis saw a 36% jump in sales year on year in 2016, taking more than £175m in the week leading up to Christmas.


Category: Brand Documentary

Brand: Diageo

Project: Talisker whisky Atlantic challenge – one ocean, one race 

Company: Precious Media

Synopsis

The challenge is a 3,000-mile rowing race, starting from La Gomera in the Canary Islands to Antigua. It has been dubbed the toughest endurance race on the planet. This documentary follows the story of the 2015/16 race.

Brief

The goal was to produce a high-profile documentary with compelling storylines of human endeavour. For Talisker, the goal was to amplify awareness to more than 50 million viewers globally while creating a subtle connection between the rugged soul of the drink and the elemental adventure of the race.

Results

We were proud to secure National Geographic channel as an exclusive global broadcast partner for the première.

Following a secondary global broadcast window, we achieved coverage in more than 150 countries, a total audience in excess of 60 million and a media value of more than $14m for Talisker. The digital content outreach engaged a highly targeted audience of a further one million viewers.


Category: Not-for-Profit/Giving Back

Brands: National Centre for Domestic Violence, Victim Support

Project: Break the routine

Company: J Walter Thompson London 

Synopsis

How do you tell the story of a victim trapped in an abusive relationship in a way that doesn’t make the viewer turn away? The creative solution was to use dance, which has a hugely emotional intensity, and back it with a song by Ellie Goulding. The call to action drove people to get help, donate or share the film. 

Brief

Domestic abuse remains a huge problem but is often ignored. On average, high-risk victims live with domestic abuse for more than two years before seeking help. 

Results

During 13-19 October, 12,220 users visited the Victim Support website – more than 70% of those were first-time visitors. The National Centre for Domestic Violence received 77 referral site visits in the week post-launch, of which 74% were new visitors.

The film was watched more than 250,000 times on Instagram – 235,000 from Goulding’s page – and more than 15,000 times on YouTube. It also drove a huge amount of PR – the biggest hits being Sky News’ Sunrise, The Huffington Post and Yahoo News. 


Category: Sport

Brand: Hugo Boss

Project: #Skywalk

Company: Wing

Synopsis

This was the final part of the Hugo Boss "Walks" trilogy, featuring sailor Alex Thomson performing daredevil stunts using his boat.

Brief

"#Skywalk" followed the success of "Keel walk" in 2013 and "Mast walk" in 2014. As sponsor, Hugo Boss had tasked Wing with the mission to elevate its brand presence on YouTube and social media, and to drive traffic to its consumer site.

Results

It was the most successful sports campaign in the history of Hugo Boss, with a reach of more than 26 million. Eighty per cent organic growth for the brand and a 34% uplift in the online store were attributed to the Walks microsite.


Category: Consumer Goods and Retail

Category: Emotive Film

Brand: Marks & Spencer

Project: Christmas with love

Company: Y&R London

Synopsis

In this film, we shone the spotlight on an all-too-often-overlooked Christmas character… Mrs Claus. Neither frumpy nor sexualised (imagine!), we created a Mrs Claus for the 21st century. Our Mrs Claus character is an empowered, helicopter-flying, erotica-reading, super-stylish 55-year-old woman who helps a troublesome little boy called Jake give his sister an extra special Christmas. Intuitive Mrs Claus knows exactly what Jake’s sister Anna wants: not a doll, a dress or pink fairy wings but bright-red sparkly trainers – perfect for running around in the snow.

Brief

Marks & Spencer’s objectives were to engage the nation and its customers at Christmas time and reverse its year-on-year decline in sales and brand share of voice. Put simply, we had to reconnect M&S with its core audience of 50-plus women.

Results

2016 was M&S’s most successful Christmas campaign ever, with more than 80 million views across YouTube and Facebook. Our original soundtrack reached number one on the iTunes classical chart and the campaign hashtag trended for all of November. Share of voice went up 250%, quarterly sales grew 2.3% (the first positive growth in more than six years) and, in the three weeks following the ad launch, 5,300 of Mrs Claus’ red dresses were sold (they sold out).

Mrs Claus was widely hailed as the best Christmas campaign of 2016 (by the London Evening Standard, The Sun, the Daily Mail, the Express and Metro, among others) and she has even begun to change the culture of Christmas, inspiring thousands of children to write to her instead of Santa. 

For just a few days, she even made the #50ShadesOfRed hashtag trend. Attagirl.

  • This article was written by PRWeek sister title Campaign


Check out the full list of winners here - and the full shortlist is available on the Brand Film Festival website

 

Have you registered with us yet?

Register now to enjoy more articles and free email bulletins

Register
Already registered?
Sign in

Would you like to post a comment?

Please Sign in or register.