|Title||DEAKIN VCE STRESS BREAK|
|Product / Service||DEAKIN UNIVERSITY|
|Category||E03. Innovative Use of Social or Community|
|Entrant||THE ROYALS Surry Hills, AUSTRALIA|
|Idea Creation||THE ROYALS Surry Hills, AUSTRALIA|
|Media||MediaCom Australia Melbourne, AUSTRALIA|
|Production||THE SWEET SHOP Melbourne, AUSTRALIA|
|Teagan Fardell||The Royals||Social Strategist|
|Ken Sum||The Royals||Senior Designer|
|Paul Broomfield||The Royals||Creative Technologist|
|Lauren Kilby||The Royals||Producer|
|Dave King||The Royals||Strategy Partner|
|Paige Kilburn||The Royals||Senior Account Director|
|Gus Hedstrom||The Royals||Creative|
|Joel Utter||The Royals||Creative|
|Nick Cummins||The Royals||Creative Partner|
|Stephen O'Farrell||The Royals||Managing Partner|
|Gareth Sweet||The Royals||Senior Creative|
|Qiao Li||The Royals||Filmmaker|
|Sarah Freeman||The Sweet Shop||Producer|
|Logan Mucha||The Sweet Shop||Director|
|Edward Pontifex||The Sweet Shop||Executive Producer|
We designed the ultimate online ‘stress break’. Over the week of STUVAC we locked four real characters - a ghost, a hot dog, a sloth and a robot - in a sound stage, armed them with dangerous weapons and at the request of stressed-out year 12 students invited them to destroy the place. The destruction was streamed live and made interactive by allowing students to send in their smash requests via the website and social media. Two commentators offered blow-by-blow accounts of every smash, crash and shatter. A live ticker on the bottom of the screen showed students reactions and called out those whose smash was coming up next. At the end of the week the entire room was reduced to rubble...we even bought in a bulldozer to finally level the place before exams started the next week.
In keeping with the strategy, to reflect the culture of the internet - i.e. be discovered in the newsfeed and via WOM rather than mainstream media - we focused on creating ‘cultural acceleration’. Not only was STUVAC a mere week in its entirety we knew that if we were going to reach this audience we had to do it in a matter of hours, not days. To reach our audience fast we created a teaser film of the characters and seeded it amongst student communities, blogs and forums online. We tracked the #stressed hashtag and responded to students who sounded like they were in need. Paid digital media was used to increase scale of the campaign but paled in comparison to the impact that WOM had. The campaign spread like wildfire through stressed-out students social networks, being shared on Facebook, Twitter and, crucially, getting up-voted to the front page of Reddit.
In just 48 hours of being live we had over 198,000 visits to the website - a number that traditionally takes campaigns months to achieve. Over 6,500 stress break requests. Millions of students reached across Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube and Reddit for a minimal media spend. Quality engagement, of those who engaged with the campaign: 80% watched the live feed 80% entered a stress break 50% watched a highlights reel 43% told a friend about it 25% shared the campaign on social media Made it to the ‘front page of the internet’, Reddit where it was organically ‘upvoted’ to the top 5 - on the same day that Star Wars was released. Achieved an ‘unpaid’ PR/media value of $1.3m and reduced the stress of students that engaged by over 97%. 46% of respondents said they would consider doing a course at Deakin after seeing Stress Break.
“In the 5 years since 2009 there has been a 42% increase in the numbers of students applying for special provisions due to significant health impairments relating to anxiety.” - Victorian Curriculum and Assessment Authority. Increasing stress levels amongst students was widely talked about in the media, but no one was helping students to reduce stress levels in the first place. Through conversations with the target audience and by tracking their online behaviour; we discovered that to counteract stress, many students had created their own coping mechanism: ‘online mini breaks’. Students didn’t have time to leave their desks to de-stress so they interspersed study with scrolling through their newsfeed, seeing what’s happening on Reddit, watching videos on YouTube. In these little reprieves they’re more often than not looking for content that is humorous, mischievous and silly. We decided to employ a similar strategy to help Deakin University reach the same students.