There has been loads of innovative work out there this year, but the campaign that impressed me most was ‘Choose a Different Ending‘. This was created for the Metropolitan Police (in conjunction with http://www.droptheweapons.org/) by AMV BBDO UK, and was directed by Nottingham-based short film-maker Simon Ellis. The objective was to raise awareness of knife-related crime in London.
The set-up is a series of short interactive YouTube videos where the viewer gets to choose what happens next by clicking on one of the options. So, in the first video, when the protagonist (the film is shot in the first-person) is about to head out with his mates, the first choice, as a hand hovers over a knife rack, is ‘Take the Knife’ or ‘Don’t Take the Knife’. As you choose your options you will very quickly be moved in to situations of varying severity, such as getting arrested for possession, or ending up looking at a life sentence for stabbing someone in the chest.
This is of course unless you reject repeated calls to grab a weapon, in which case you end up at a party dancing with the girl of your dreams. What I noticed is that each time I have gone through the options, this is the last path I took!
Alongside the YouTube channel there was also a TV component with the same different endings.
It was really the user interaction aspect that made this campaign stand out for me, rather than anything based around results. It builds on the well-established Public Service Announcement and brings it in to the modern age using social media in an original fashion.
Regarding results, the YouTube channel has had over 460,000 views which sounds a little underwhelming for something that was clearly designed to be a viral hit and beyond that it is quite hard to get any idea of how the campaign performed against expectations, etc. It would be interesting to find out as this is an excellent idea, executed to perfection and I would like to see this sort of work encouraged in the future.