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The best PSA of all time?

In just three weeks online, an Australian viral video about train safety has earned over 30 million YouTube views, making it an instant classic public service announcement.

If you haven’t seen it yet, take a look at the morbid and hilarious “Dumb Ways To Die” video:

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McCann Melbourne created “Dumb Ways to Die” for Metro Trains, a transit system in Melbourne. According to The Age, McCann Worldgroup estimated its campaign generated $50 million in “global-earned media value.”

PSAs are often as much ads for ad agencies as they are for anything else. Here, McCann got to flex its social media muscles. The campaign has some presence on just about every social network. Justine Marino, McCann’s head of digital, in Australian Creative, explained that the strategy used platforms relevant to the target audiences of teens and young adults: “The Tumblr page was actually created pre-launch to ensure the campaign made it onto the front page of Reddit, in order to generate a strong viral impact extremely quickly. The website, YouTube and Tumblr formed the three main campaign platforms, with Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Pinterest used to generate viral effect. We also turned iTunes and Soundcloud into media vehicles for the campaign.”

The centerpiece of the campaign is a dedicated Dumb Ways to Die website. You can also download the song as an MP3 from Soundcloud, share animated GIFs on Tumblr, and of course play the video on YouTube.

McCann probably did this PSA for free or at a very low cost, in exchange for more creative leeway to create something risky and cool.

The result? Good creative works. As someone noted, the video has been played more times than there are people in all of Australia.

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Who created this campaign?

Agency: McCann Melbourne
Executive Creative Director: John Mescall
Creative Team: John Mescall, Pat Baron
Animation: Julian Frost
Digital Team: Huey Groves, Christian Stocker
Group Account Director: Adrian Mills
Account Director: Alec Hussain
Senior Account Manager: Tamara Broman
Senior Producer: Mark Bradley
Producer: Cinnamon Darvall
Composer and producer: Oliver McGill
Song performed by Emily Lubitz, as Tangerine Kitty
(Credits via Creative Brief Asia and Wikipedia)

Who signed off on it?

Client: Metro Trains
General Manager, Corporate Relations: Leah Waymark
Marketing Manager: Chloe Alsop

— By Daryl Lang. Filed under Advertising, Social Media

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