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Canary Island's Campaign Surprised a 100 Million Europeans Watching Winter Olympics



The #Notwintergames campaign, created by DEC BBDO, used forward planning and real time insights to surprise viewers and athletes alike

Canary Island's Campaign Surprised a 100 Million Europeans Watching Winter Olympics
Canary Islands surprised 100 million Europeans during the Korea Games with an innovative campaign devised by DEC BBDO.

This high-impact campaign in ten key markets earned the Canary Islands fifth place in the ranking of the world’s-most-commented destinations on social networks.

Canary Islands, working jointly with DEC BBDO, managed to make the most of the repercussion of the Korea Games on the rest of the world.During the PyeongChang games, the Canary Islands launched #NotWinter Games, sparking millions of engagements with contents generated by potential travellers in their own countries and holidaymakers on the islands. Through this notorious action, DEC BBDO aimed to reinforce the differential positioning of the Canary Islands, making the fact that it is never winter in the Canary Islands go viral.

While the Winter Olympics were taking place, the #NotWinter Games were screened non-stop on digital screens installed in emblematic spots in Europe, such as Piccadilly Circus, comparing the chilly conditions in these cities with images of the warm climate and fun on the islands, achieving 6.6 million engagements in the three cities.

While Europe was battered by freezing conditions, the #NotWinter Games TV channel reporters interviewed passers-by in London, Berlin and Oslo as they watched balmy scenes on screens, then publishing their responses to questions like: “Which of the #NotWinter Games activities would you rather be doing right now, in the Canaries? Carnivalling, Freestyle Towelling, Relaxathon, Splashing Yeah!  or Contemplating?” through each country’s social networks.

Simultaneously, a mobile unit swept unannounced through the Canary Islands’ top spots for holidaymakers, challenging tourists of the same nationalities as the interviewees to try their hand at the different “sports” in the #NotWinter Games. 

This scenes of holidaymakers enjoying themselves on the beaches and in the Canary Islands in February went viral, generating relevant, high-profile videos at the exact moment on each of the social networks, in each market.

The best tourists and interviewees were awarded medals of warm sand from the Canary Islands. 

To spread notoriety on Facebook and Instagram, Canary Islands also launched a challenge which, in just one week, achieved a total of 1.2 million engagements. 

For seven days, each island challenged different celebrities to upload photographs of themselves having fun in the Canary Islands, including the hashtag #NotWinter and their location. They were also asked to challenge their followers and one of their friends to try to take a better photo. We thus obtained new, high-quality content for the positioning, such as photographs of personalities who are familiar to our target enjoying the best climate in the world in the depths of February.

Lastly, the Spanish sportspeople who won medals at the PyeongChang Games, Regino Hernández (bronze in snowboardcross) and Javier Fernández (bronze in figure skating), were also sent messages to congratulate and challenge them.

Javier Fernández responded immediately with a post which triggered more engagement than his usual posts in just a few minutes, attracting more than 20 million likes in less than an hour.

Contextual marketing campaigns, guided by DEC BBDO, are extremely important to the Canary Islands’ communication strategy, so much so that British tour operator First Choice says that Canary Islands is the fifth-most-commented destination on Facebook and Twitter by British users after New York, Paris, Spain and France.

See all the #NotWinter Games TV videos here 

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