Cannes Lions

Thunderstruck

OPEN BRAND CONSULTING, Sydney / ROYAL AUSTRALIAN MINT / 2019

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Case Film
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Overview

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Credits

Overview

Background

• Situation

Royal Australian Mint is a brand that immortalises Australian icons. And few are more iconic to Down Under than AC/DC. On a $25K budget, Royal Australian Mint wanted to launch a unique range of AC/DC coins, commemorating 45 years of the rock icon.

• Brief

Our job was not only to make the commemorative coins even more special and valuable to collectors and AC/DC fans alike, but to create a PR artefact that would in turn become an iconic act of brazenness. We had to do launch the AC/DC coins with no help from the band themselves in any way.

• Objectives

Sell all 40,000 coins as fast as possible and connect with a new audience of fans - those rock fans who were not necessarily coin collectors.

Idea

We struck 10 lucky AC/DC coins with 3.5 million volts of man made lightning using a Tesla coil, with the media observing. They told everyone else for us.

Lightning is a symbol of the band – embedded in its logo, and entrenched in the lyrics of its songs. It was an electrifying act from a shock-value rock band: ideal for AC/DC fans.

Strategy

• Insight

Fans of the band love the lightning that symbolises the band’s high-voltage attitude.

• Key message

Own a rare AC/DC coin struck by lightning.

• Target audience

AC/DC fans of all ages, all over Australia who are passionate about the band, but not necessarily coin collectors.

• Creation and distribution of assets

Organic. Created and distributed by the media outlets themselves.

There was no PR amplification spend whatsoever.

Execution

• Implementation of the PR

We gathered the Australian media to Questacon (Australia's national technology centre) in Canberra witness a Tesla coil striking 10 lucky coins with 3.5 million volts of man made lightning - then assigned them to 10 special packs, and let the PR story take over. Each of the 10 special coins that was struck carried a small mark visible under a magnifying glass - enough to identify the coin as 'Thunderstruck'.

• Timeline

48 hours (until the coins sold out), launched on October 1, 2018.

• Scale

National across Australia. The PR reached 25% of Australia’s population (about 6 million of 24 million) and was seen on all major news channels, dominating news coverage on October 2nd achieving over 127 pieces of individual news coverage across print, online, radio and TV.