Wednesday, June 20, 2007

Big Warnie.

Cricket – for over 125 years Australia and England have been fierce rivals. Shane Warne – Australian. No one upsets an English cricket fan more than Shane Warne. He’s taken more wickets than anyone in the game’s long history, mostly off the English. Find a new way to ignite the rivalry between the two countries in the lead up to the 2006/2007 cricket series. Cricket Australia wanted to sell 1 million tickets for the series to two markets: Australia and England. (That’s a massive amount of tickets for a sporting event in Australia.) They covertly built a 5 metre high statue of Shane Warne and then very publically transported it by truck and on foot to the very heart of London – Piccadilly Circus. They then held an unveiling ceremony designed to commemorate the anticipated Australian victory. They filmed the entire event, editing the mayhem into a series of 30 second films and a viral documentary. It was a highly provocative promotion intended to draw controversy and inflame rivalry in two countries in separate hemispheres. ‘Big Warnie’ sparked a media storm. It was picked up by over 70 newspapers, websites, news and current affairs programs, as far afield as India and France. The campaign was launched via a website attracting 130,000 hits in the first three days. · All this attention resulted in a record number of tickets (1.275 million) being sold.

Agency: George Patterson Y&R, Australia.