Short List
CategoryA03. Cars & Automotive Products & Services
Idea Creation TBWA\HAKUHODO Tokyo, JAPAN


Name Company Position
Kazoo Sato TBWA\HAKUHODO Chief Creative Officer
Norihito Takahashi TBWA\HAKUHODO Creative Director
Yoku Ishida TBWA\HAKUHODO Copywriter
Naho Momoi TBWA\HAKUHODO Copywriter
Takaya Masuda TBWA\HAKUHODO Art Director
Manabu Suzuki TBWA\HAKUHODO Art Director
Kazuyuki Matsuo TBWA\HAKUHODO Strategic Planner
Kazuaki Kuribayashi TBWA\HAKUHODO Interactive Planner
Erika Ichikawa TBWA\HAKUHODO Interactive Architect
Takuma Fujii TBWA\HAKUHODO Account Supervisor
Taka Kamimura TBWA\HAKUHODO Account Supervisor
Hisashi Nakamura AOI Pro. Producer
Arata Hiyajo AOI Pro. Project Manager
Cezan Iseda AOI Pro Director
Yuichi Miyata Freelance Editor

The Campaign

As cats have the tendency to hide into parts of a car undetectable just by looking, we encouraged the drivers to knock on the car hood before starting their cars. We named this action “Knock Knock Cats.” It’s the most simple and thoughtful action, no need for technology or special skills. Absolutely anyone can take part in the “Knock Knock Cats.” Surprisingly, no other car manufacturer had ever thought of the power of such a simple action.


Simple action with catchy name to create new behavior. We came up with a simple action and named it “Knock Knock Cats,” which is very ‘catchy’ to Japanese ears. Expand Awareness through Social Media. We started off by posting the announcement of this project with a hash tag #KnockKnockCats though Nissan’s social media account (Facebook/twitter). The catchy-ness of the name and great insight soon went viral through social media. We also co-created an online movie with cat lovers for promotional purposes. Created free download materials for co-creation In response to demand from cat lovers, we created a special icon, a sticker and a poster for free. This encouraged people to share #KnockKnockCats even more. Additional Driver Specific Placement The project was also promoted on car navigation and radio which are known to be the ideal means to give reminders to drivers.

The “Knock Knock Cats” action instantly spread across Japan and on social media. Its hash tag soon became the No.1 trend word on twitter. Media such as TV, online and newspaper were also quick to pick up this project. The sensation even resulted in user-generated output, such as stickers, illustrations and game apps. They were all proactively shared on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. Nissan responded by providing free download materials. Most importantly, however, the new behavior this project created saved the lives of many cats. Twitter Engagement: 5600% UP Impression: 148,141,839?reached to half of population in Japan? Free Publicity: 660,000,000yen?x100 more than estimated amount? 1 in 7 people saved the lives of cats (Result from 1 day research done via Nissan’s twitter account) 8 competitors have supported this initiative. Logo/Poster Download: 21,960 Instagram likes: 102,611 Sticker requests: 39,717 (only 1000 was available)

The Situation

Created a new perception of Nissan and Safety. Cats hide inside the engine compartment of cars during the winter to keep themselves warm. Drivers start their cars without noticing them, and many cats become casualties. This fact remained unknown, even among cat lovers. Nissan was the first to react and promote #KnockKnockCats, a simple action of knocking on the car hood. Its simplicity helped spread this action and saved the lives of many cats. Nissan’s initiative which was even supported by competitors, created a new perception of Nissan. It also created a new perception of safety for the automotive industry.

The Strategy

Target Cat Lovers and car owners. Objective To prevent unwanted tragedies from occurring, create and spread the habit of 'Knock Knock Cats’ - directly with cat lovers. Insight People are constantly and proactively sharing cat related contents on social media to show their love of cats. It’s the ideal platform to place all ‘Knock Knock Cats’ content and information. Approach Communicate to cat fans that ’sharing / actually doing Knock Knock Cats themselves’ is the simplest way to save precious lives and is a truly meaningful way to show their love towards our feline friends. The simplicity and meaningfulness will encourage people to amplify this action.


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