Client – Old Spice

Markets – North America

Timing – April 11 – April 29 2015

Agencies/Vendors – Wieden + Kennedy, Prettybird, Twitch

Tech Word Cloud – real-time gaming, user-controlled experience, live streaming, emoji, buzz

Old Spice created the world’s first branded, live-action, real-time video game to reach out to millennial gamers.

BACKGROUND

Old Spice was looking for a way to establish itself in the world of online gaming, one of the fastest growing passion points for millennial males. The brand wanted to forge a genuine connection with 12-34 year old gamers, a segment that is traditionally skeptical and hard to please.

THE IDEA

To reach their target audience, Old Spice created the world’s first branded, live-action, real-time video game – the Old Spice Nature Adventure. They placed a live man in the woods and, through comments and emojis, allowed players to control his every move over a three day period. The gamers could enable the man to navigate through the forest, accomplish tasks, and even marry a fairy princess.

THE TECHNOLOGY

Old Spice partnered with a live-streaming gaming platform to build a custom game experience that delivered on their “ridiculously masculine” brand promise. Since the experience was produced in real-time, Old Spice had to create a back-end control-room interface from scratch – one that allowed them to parse through and respond to thousands of user comments and commands. Rather than fake or manipulate this aspect, the brand wanted to deliver a truly authentic, user-controlled experience.

THE PROCESS

Old Spice’s Agency of Record, Wieden + Kennedy, led the strategic and creative aspect of the campaign. The brand partnered with the live-streaming gaming platform, Twitch, to make the game a reality. The production and digital partner, Prettybird, helped with the live action shoot direction and digital development. In leveraging these technologies to create a gaming campaign, Old Spice wanted to move away from traditional advertising narratives where brands are in control, relinquishing the ability to drive and direct the story to the consumer.

THE RESULTS

The Nature Adventure game was successful, entertaining 2.5 million gaming enthusiasts for an average of 11 minutes per person – the equivalent of 29 years’ worth of branded entertainment from Old Spice – in just 72 hours. The work also created goodwill and buzz within the gaming community, generating more than 267 million paid and earned impressions throughout the campaign.