Innovative, emotionally engaging and hugely effective, the ‘World Under Water’ campaign launched by the crowd funding platform, CarbonStory, used ingenious techniques to generate extraordinary results.
The campaign was created by combining two existing technologies: Google Street View and Web Gl. This allowed CarbonStory to produce a website where users could see their home street submerged under two metres of water, a real consequence of global warming for some parts of the world. The outcome was a global campaign (the majority of the world is covered by Google Street View) that was hugely personal to participants. By creating an image that was relevant to each individual’s address, the campaign succeeded in forcing the user to deal with the potentially devastating consequences of global warming. The campaign worked because it leveraged an important insight: we fail to change our behaviour in response to global warming because we find it difficult to imagine its consequences. What’s more the personal nature of the campaign packed an emotional punch – are there many things more emotional than your own home? For me, the sight of my home submerged in water was a jarring sight and conjured up an emotional response.
But the campaign wasn’t there just to shock. After you were shown your home submerged (and offered to share the image on social media), a solution was offered. Users could calculate their carbon footprint and were offered advice and support towards becoming more green. This cleverly reinforces CarbonStory’s mission to reduce global greenhouse emissions.
The result? A hugely memorable and effective campaign. It reached 213 countries and achieved a dizzy 201 million media impressions within its first week.