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See how we worked with

Volvo's Human Made Stories

Georgina Williams, Head of Marketing at Volvo Car UK explains: “Everything we do at Volvo centres on people – we want to make life easier, safer and more enjoyable. So every innovation is designed to simplify and improve the lives of those who drive a Volvo.

“In Human Made Stories, we wanted to profile people who share that ethos. Oliver, Maria, Josefin and Erik are all so genuine in their mission to push boundaries and make the world a better place. They are each relentless in their pursuit of craft and innovation to drive the world forward – a trait shared by Volvo.”
Georgina Williams, Head of Marketing at Volvo Car UK explains: Everything we do at Volvo centres on people – we want to make life easier, safer and more enjoyable. So every innovation is designed to simplify and improve the lives of those who drive a Volvo.

In Human Made Stories, we wanted to profile people who share that ethos. Oliver, Maria, Josefin and Erik are all so genuine in their mission to push boundaries and make the world a better place. They are each relentless in their pursuit of craft and innovation to drive the world forward – a trait shared by Volvo.
Volvo logo

Volvo

Human Made Stories

Volvo had successfully established itself as the official channel sponsor of Sky Atlantic, active from 2014. From the outset, Sky Atlantic had continuously performed well for Volvo. The sponsorship and activation was always cohesive and always evolving, to create a compelling story to establish a strong emotional connection with the audience. It’s this approach which has enabled Volvo to become the most recalled sponsorship in its competitor set.

However, recent research showed signs of the idents losing traction, indicating viewers had become too familiar with the creatives. This presented an opportunity for the partnership to develop a more detailed message and reaffirm Volvo’s connection to the audience. Volvo needed to evolve its creative strategy and to create a campaign which would reach the right audience and represent the brand’s evolving relationship with Sky Atlantic.

0
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People watched the Sky Atlantic premiere
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Total VOD views – outperformed all Docs over similar period
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m
Twitter Amplify impressions

Insight

As a direct result of the sponsorship, Volvo had seen significant uplifts in brand image scores for viewers who had seen the TV sponsorship. Volvo was seen as a more innovative, up-to-date and modern brand with an increased reputation for quality. There were also uplifts in brand metrics such as likeability, consideration and recommendation. With the partnership now so well established, Sky and Volvo were able to take the campaign to the next level.

Branded content has proven to be a great way to enable advertisers to shift brand perception. By combining Volvo’s philosophy to always put people first, and Sky Atlantic’s reputation for producing modern, distinctive, and award winning content, it became apparent producing co-branded content would establish Volvo as a progressive, premium and innovative brand.

Idea

To showcase Volvo as a pioneer of innovation, Volvo and Sky Atlantic produced a series of short films entitled ‘Human Made Stories’. Highlighting Volvo’s philosophy to always put people first, Human Made Stories profiles defiant pioneers: people who inherently do things differently, challenge conventions and create their own path.

The series, comprised of three unique episodes, focused on different authentic characters who each aligned with Volvo’s innovations and brand values:

  • Oliver Armitage: an innovative engineer whose lifelong pursuit is making human and machine work together seamlessly. Along with his team from Cambridge, Oliver works with amputees to develop smart prostheses which transform their lives. Like Volvo, he lives and breathes human centricity and connectivity.
  • Maria Rindstam and Josefin Arrhénborg,: Swedish entrepreneurs who salvage boat wrecks from the Stockholm archipelago to reduce the impact on the local nature. Just as Volvo does, with 85% recyclable cars, the progressive pair are focused on preserving the environment for future generations.
  • Erik Johansson: a surreal photographer who captures ideas instead of moments, is obsessed with his craft. By bringing an engineering approach to art, he is constantly challenging conventions to achieve the impossible – as is Volvo, as it works towards its vision, through the development of autonomous driving and active safety technologies, to reduce deaths in new Volvo cars by 2020.

In addition to on-air, these films were also made available for viewers within the Sky Atlantic, Documentary and Catch up tiles on Sky’s on-demand service including Sky’s newest STB Sky Q for a 12 month period.

Finally, in a first for Sky Media, the campaign was fronted with an exclusive screening of a specially produced 12-minute film featuring all 3 stories scheduled on Sky Atlantic linear channel.

Activation

Taking advantage of Sky’s leading platform’s and technology, Sky Media were able to drive viewers to watch the bespoke films both on-demand and via a bespoke Sky Atlantic microsite.

On air, Sky Media included a Sky Atlantic branded 30” trailer which ran across Sky’s wholly owned channels and sponsorship idents which incorporated the URL.

Via digital, a road block of display formats were implemented across Sky Sports and Sky Sports News.  By using Sky’s data and Sky AdVance, Sky Media were also able to re-target individuals who were fans of drama and had seen the TV commercial, and serve them display ads and video content to drive them to watch the branded content.

To enhance the activation via social media, Twitter Amplify was used to serve the sponsorship ident prior to the 30” TV commercial which Sky Atlantic tweeted to their followers on 3 separate occasions. These tweets were scheduled on important launch nights on linear.

Results

Engagement

  • This was the first time commercial content had been distributed on editorial TV, Sky Q and OnDemand platforms with the latter helping viewers to discover the films
  • 91% – across TV Video On Demand (above VTR benchmark and over on predicted delivery)
  • Sky AdVance enabled us to connect TV and digital with a view through rate of 82% and deliver Sky’s third highest video completion rate since the launch of AdVance

Qualitative

  • This showed Human Made Stories evoked powerful emotions amongst respondents with extremely high appeal for these short forms particularly for On Demand viewers
  • The uniform tone and style of Human Made Stories created a strong identity for the series. This, combined with the quality of the content and the uniqueness of the individual stories, helped to ensure strong positive engagement, even when viewed in one sitting

Quote

  • One respondent said “They’re really beautiful, and clearly made by very talented directors. The music really pulls you into the stories too. A lot of work has gone into them, definitely”

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