Dumb Ways to Die: killer new media idea

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Dumb Ways to Die – a new integrated campaign for Metro trains, Melbourne reiterates what  Social Media gurus have said across many seminars, workshops and conferences: ‘content is the new currency’.

The  campaign is a case study on what to do right in the context of new media. The objective is to reduce the number of serious and fatal accidents on its rail network. Instead of taking a rational approach, the effort is to tangentially raise awareness about the dumb things one can do while using the rail network. A music video with huge pass-along value has been created. It’s got memorable fun, lyrics set to a catchy tune.

Agency: McCann

The lyrics and the situations described are quote hilarious, bring out a smile and motivate you to share the video with friends. The print execution provides people with the song lyrics, or, all the dumb ways you could die. These are:

“Invite a psycho killer inside/ Scratch a drug dealer’s brand new ride/ Take your helmet off in outer space/ use a clothes dryer as a hiding place… and, “Stand on the edge of a train platform/ Drive around the boomgates at a level crossing/ Run across the tracks between the platforms/ They may not rhyme but they’re quite possibly/ The dumbest ways to die.”

Sharing has been made easier by converting each ‘way to die’ into a Tumblr post. The song can be downloaded from iTunes or SoundCloud. Of course all of this process will not work if the original content was not share worthy. The cute video and the hummable song (which has quickly turned into my ear worm) makes it work. I think the strategy was bang on too as youngsters can easily shut out safety messages. It has to be packaged in an interesting way. Sometimes shock tactics like what TAC, Melbourne did with road safety. This fun way of doing it as also smart.

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