Why is this work relevant for Brand Experience & Activation?
The average car buyer has up to 900 digital and physical touch points before purchasing a car. We also know that you need consistency to build trust. So, to raise awareness around an issue as complex as global gender equality, we created assets for as many touch points as possible. Combining online with offline, we made sure that every touch point connected with audiences and created an engaging and emotional experience. All in local languages across more than 70 markets, so consumers everywhere could clearly understand the idea and share the message.
Business challenge: to transform automotive safety from something traditional and expected into a meaningful and relevant movement in line with Volvo’s purpose and brand strategy. In specific, the challenge was to celebrate the 60th anniversary of Volvo’s safety belt.
Volvo has gathered real-world data since the 1970s to learn what happens during a collision — regardless of size or gender. And they continue to do so. Currently they have data from more than 43.000 collisions.
With the E.V.A. Initiative, we wanted to highlight this issue - an issue that both press, researchers and users have tried to bring to public attention, but never has a car brand led this conversation. Additionally, we wanted to do something. So the objective was not only to address the issue, but to close the gender crash gap, no matter what car you are able to drive.
Describe the creative idea (20% of vote)
Volvo’s philosophy has always been to put safety of people before business. 60 years ago, they gave away their three-point safety belt patent. So, we thought: what if we could get Volvo to make cars safer for everyone, once again?
And that’s exactly what we did. To make cars safer for women, we collected all of Volvo’s safety research and made it available to everyone. By creating a digital library with data from more than 43,000 collisions and 72,000 people, the research became open and free to any company to learn from.
For the first time ever, anyone could download more than 40 years of research and learn how it has led to some of Volvo’s most innovative systems. We then gave the numbers a face and showed how the injustice personally affects women in a global campaign with film, print, social, outdoor, and PR.
Describe the strategy (20% of vote)
We conducted stakeholder interviews, consumer surveys, studied Volvo’s proprietary and third-party safety research, reads through NCAP testing protocols, SEO analysis, more than 100 hours of desk research including press from 1960 and onwards.
We found that women are 71% more likely to be injured and 17% more likely to die in a car crash. The reason: most crash tests are based on male crash test dummies. But Volvo has gathered real-world data since the 1970s to protect all people equally.
Therefore, our goal was to get Volvo to share this crucial data with the car industry to make all cars safer — regardless of brand, just like Volvo did 60 years ago when giving away the three-point safety belt patent. Rather than celebrating the anniversary, we saw bigger impact in choosing to focus on closing the gender gap.
Describe the execution (30% of vote)
The challenge was to catch the attention of regular consumers around a complex subject. To make people aware of the car safety inequality to finally prove Volvo’s authority to make this statement. To engage people all around the globe, we decided to show how the injustice affects women in a personal and direct way. We did this by spreading our message in a global campaign that included film, print, social, outdoor, and PR.
Every campaign element directed people to the website where anyone could download the research and learn how it has led to Volvo’s most innovative systems. We aimed to reinterpret as many different touch points as possible to make the data emotional and relatable for everyone. For example: the film worked as an introduction and tool for people to spread awareness, and the print ad invited the audience to literally put their hand on the issue.
List the results (30% of vote)
The campaign quickly became news and sparked a global conversation about equal road safety. Additionally, the highest number of downloads came from China, where 100 new car brands see the light of day every year - this without the campaign even running in China. It also created a debate within the auto industry as other carmakers embraced the initiative, such as electric vehicle startup Uniti. The European Commission tweeted out their appraisal for the campaign, for raisning awareness around the inequality, and especially for trying to eliminate it. Volvo Cars Brand Share of Voice online exceeded Audi, Land Rover and Volkswagen in the period – all brands Volvo Cars usually falls behind. Volvo Cars saw peak in positive sentiment online of 13.1%.
Campaign site visits first month: 850.000+
Downloads from library: 20.000+
Film views: 135.000.000+
+900 news outlets
Earned media reach: +500M
SoMe reach: +100M
SoMe impressions: +290M