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Aug 22, 2000
Case Study

Targeting the ‘Lads’ Online with Controversial Creative: Breathe.com's Blow Up Doll

SUMMARY: No summary available.
CHALLENGE

Breathe.com decided recently that they wanted to increase brand awareness among young, sophisticated, ‘modern urbanists’. Particularly the male ones. The best option, as they saw it, was a campaign which combined viral and interactive elements, in order to highlight the services Breathe offers to its users.

CREATIVE

Breathe appointed online business gurus Outrider to come up with the campaign, which they duly did, lord love ’em. Aiming to encapsulate the strap-line ‘It’s amazing what happens when you breathe’, they created a risqué affair centred around a blow-up doll. Controversial, yes, but deliberately so – we’ve all heard about the downward trend in banner click through rates; Outrider wanted to combat it.

Banners and pop-ups, all featuring the doll (which inflated before the very eyes of users), were run across men’s lifestyle sites. They offered prospective clickers the opportunity to play the blow-up doll game (don’t ask), or to send ‘hot’n’horny’ calling cards to their friends (‘would that be an info-gathering ploy?’ we hear you ask). Those who did click were taken to a microsite (the ‘pleasure palace’), which had been set up to run alongside the Breathe.com homepage. There they were presented with the fun options, plus, of course, a link to the main Breathe site.


RESULTS

The choice of controversial creative paid off. You might have guessed that it led to a fair amount of press exposure and, as for success rates – the results were more than pleasing: ‘all sites selected performed well above industry averages, with response rates of up to 23%’, say Breathe. ‘Due to highly targeted placement the campaign saw high levels of traffic to the Breathe.com site, and in turn high levels of registrations to Breathe.com services. There was a chain reaction of calling cards being sent to friends resulting in further traffic to the microsite.’

Post-campaign analysis by Breathe has shown that there has been a ‘significant’ conversion of newly registered users into regular users.
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