When they came to Ogilvy Singapore and its legendary creative leader Neil French, he could have offered them a traditional approach: testimonials, statistics, and the like. Or he could have proven it by...well, proving it. Which is what he did. In the craziest way possible.
Learn more about Neil French at www.neilfrench.com
Volvo Trucks Live Test Series
Previously, Volvo Trucks had taken a traditional approach in its launch marketing, according to Lars Terling, the company's vice president marketing communications. "Before the viral campaign, we had worked with many different types of traditional marketing communication, including PR, social media, films on YouTube, and printed marketing materials," he explains.
But the media landscape had fundamentally changed since its last major launch.
So, rather than approach an ad agency with experience in its sector, Volvo Trucks tapped Forsman & Bodenfors—one of Sweden's leading creative agencies, with a strong track record in creating ground-breaking consumer campaigns for brands including Ikea, E.ON, UNICEF, and Volvo Cars.
"We were surprised to be approached by Volvo Trucks because we felt at first maybe they needed a business to business specialist," Anna Qvennerstedt, the agency's senior partner and board chair, admits. "But then we realized they really did want to do things in a different way. Because it's the right attitude and it's people that matter most when it comes to creating great campaigns—not whether what you are doing is B2B or B2C."
Two important early insights had a significant impact on the nature of the films produced.
The first was the emotional connection the team found truck drivers have with the trucks they drive—which got the creative thinking of how to present the new trucks in an emotionally engaging way.
The second was the volume of people who influence truck buying decisions—from the driver to his or her family and friends, colleagues and bosses, clients and the businesses whose products the trucks carry. "TV would have been too expensive to create a campaign with this wide a reach. Social media and viral, however, gave us the opportunity to reach a wider audience in a new way," says Engström.