The WWF France #NoBuildChallenge disrupted Fortnite, the world’s most popular eSport, with the first ever eco-friendly challenge. This captured the attention of Fortnite’s audience of passionate young people by bringing to life in an engaging, totally unique way the reality of a planet that is running out of resources.
Through the campaign we were able to use gaming as a social channel, tapping into behaviours of gamers who naturally create and share content with each other. It enabled WWF to give a voice to young people desperate to persuade governments to tackle climate change and save our planet.
The depletion of the earth's natural resources is a major problem which we must fight against to save the planet. Yet every year we continue to use more natural resources than the earth has to offer.
The challenge for WWF was to engage with a young audience that is usually phobic to traditional forms of advertising and marketing but which obviously cares about climate change, based on their mobilisation during #FridaysForTheFuture.
WWF needed to share its message and values using unorthodox media and platforms to catch this target where their conversations about climate change are happening.
Describe the creative idea
To help the young generation amplify their message, WWF France wanted to illustrate the ecological challenges of tomorrow in an entertaining yet impactful way, using one of the main media of conversation and creativity for them: video games.
One game in particular, Fortnite, best reflects the ecological issues of tomorrow. In-game, natural resources (wood, stone, metal) help players build and protect themselves from enemy fire, find shelter, move around the map and ultimately reach the Victory Royal.
We created the first eco-friendly challenge: the #NoBuildChallenge. The rule is simple – players must proceed through the game without exploiting any natural resources even though their opponents can still use them. As finishing the game becomes extremely tricky, the players can share our message with a proof of experience : without the planet’s natural resources it’s going to be hard for us to stay alive.
Describe the strategy
Young audiences are notoriously difficult to reach with traditional advertising. As they don’t react well to top down or intrusive brand messages, we chose another way to engage them where they are: within the Fortnite game they spend an average of six to 10 hours on each week.
Fortnite best reflects the ecological issues of tomorrow. In-game, natural resources help players build and protect themselves from enemy fire, find shelter, move around the map and ultimately reach the Victory Royal.
The #NoBuildChallenge taps into behaviours of gamers who naturally create and share content: rules and tips of the game are conveyed by fellow gamers, conversations naturally occur in friends-chats and on gaming stream websites such as Twitch or YouTube.
Describe the execution
- The #NoBuildChallenge campaign was kickstarted on April 5 on the Solary Twitch channel, one of the biggest French pro-gaming teams with 740,000 followers, before being broadcasted on Youtube.
- The Solary gamers then invited their audiences to challenge their best scores and raise awareness of ecological emergencies amongst their peers.
- The day after, four high-profile YouTube gamers with four million followers combined, took the challenge.
- More gamers followed suit, uploading footage their attempts to take on the challenge on social media, creating a snowball effect. Thanks to the comments section of the different social-lives, audiences were able to interact with streamers to share their vision of our ecological issues. Viewers and players were getting informed about WWF missions and sharing how they can change their behaviours to protect our planet.
Describe the outcome
Over one week, without any media (or production cost), the #NoBuildChallenge became the number one trending topic on YouTube Gaming France, with hundreds of streamers taking up the challenge.
The live event on Twitch generated over 36,000 viewers and more than 2 million views of WWF’s message were watched.
Thousands of fans viewed, engaged and shared the content on social media, generating over 12.5 million views on YouTube. Press coverage reached 500 million unique visitors worldwide through publications including Contagious, AdAge, Campaign, The Ecologist, Europe 1, Konbini, BFM TV, Paris Match.
But, most importantly, pro-gaming team Solary got so engaged with the #NoBuildChallenge campaign that they decided to give away their 1M$ Fortnite WorldCup Cashprize to WWF France to help save the planet!