Cannes Lions

ENTERTAINMENT, TRAVEL AND TOURISM

VML, Kansas City / NASHVILLE CONVENTION AND VISITORS CORPORATION / 2014

Awards:

1 Silver Cannes Lions
1 Bronze Cannes Lions
1 Shortlisted Cannes Lions
Case Film
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Supporting Content
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Overview

Entries

Credits

Overview

Description

In the U.S., branded content is a pay-to-play platform. Typically, broadcast opportunities are limited to integration in, or sponsorship of, existing network content. There have been some rare cases of brand-created content being broadcasted, but they came with multimillion-dollar media buys. This was the first time in history that brand-created content aired on major networks, for free. On top of that, while most content of this kind has to bury brand for the sake of entertainment, we turned our brand into the entertainment — essentially creating a 60-minute commercial for Nashville that aired on national (and international) television as pure entertainment. The network even sold ads against our 'ad'.

Execution

We launched the app in the Apple Store a week before the ABC premiere, and used owned and earned media to drive downloads. During the broadcast, the app automatically listened for and synced with the film—displaying interesting facts about the artists as they told their stories. Viewers could then save locations to create custom tours of Nashville inspired by their favorite musicians. Then, once they made it to Nashville, the app became a personal tour guide, using geo-fencing to direct them to the dives, venues and icons they saved from the film.

Outcome

'For The Love Of Music' far surpassed any previous marketing efforts by the Nashville Convention & Visitors Bureau. 24 of the biggest names in music starred in and promoted the film to their more than 20 million social followers, for free. It aired on some of the biggest television networks in the world, including ABC, Foxtel, Palladia, and CMT. The film even gave ABC a 38% bump in ratings in its on-air debut. It has been talked about in magazines, featured on music blogs, news sites, and even Southwest Airlines’ company blog. Since the film debuted, visits to visitmusiccity.com have increased 787% and hotel bookings are up 18%. Nashville has attributed the film to helping spark the biggest tourism boom in the city’s history, all without traditional advertising or a dime spent on media.

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