Interactive advertising: six brands that got it right

Marketers Storytellers have always strived to use the latest technologies and tools to captivate their audience. The challenge lies in finding new ways to provoke an emotion or reaction while maintaining the thin line between enhancement and gimmick. Here are Campaign's top ads that pushed the envelope with their use of standout interactive video.

Interactive advertising: six brands that got it right

Right now we are standing on the edge of a new era in media which could spell doom or bloom for virtual reality. It could go the way of Betamax or HD DVD, becoming obsolete, or it could be the catalyst for something new – something so personal and unique for marketers and consumers alike, that we can barely scratch the surface of possibilities.  

As this technoogy is just finding its feet with consumers, and it would be hard to demonstrate anything without owning VR headsets, I have opted to draw the line for this rundown at video media, primarily YouTube.

"The real voyage of discovery consists not in seeking new landscapes, but in having new eyes" Marcel Proust, French novelist and critic

Intouch Insurance "Don’t rush: most terrible fatal crash ever" by BBDO Russia

The first on the list comes from BBDO Russia. Aptly named "Don't rush", the video shows what is seemingly 10 minutes of a dull drive through the back roads of Russia. Only when the user scrubs though the video to skip ahead is the true message behind the ad revealed. 

Scrub through video / move cursor along timeline to reveal hidden message

Family Matters "360 experience: Do not look the other way"

Also from Russia, this PSA from the organisation Family Matters uses the recent YouTube implementation of 360-degree camera rotation. You may need to watch twice to understand it, but this campaign highlights the hidden world of domestic abuse in Russia, urging viewers not to look away. The result: a powerful campaign that really hits home with its message.

Drag the screen to move camera

Hot Wheels "Custom motors cup challenge"

This interactive racing adventure by Hot Wheels is over six years old, yet still holds up well. Hot Wheels obviously knows its target audience well, having created a fun to watch and even more fun to play experience that allows the user to customise their racing car and watch how it fares in a race. The limitations of this technology may seem obvious, yet it still manages to bring the big kid out in us. A machine gun on your car or new tyres? Hmmm, I wonder.

Orabrush "Diary of a dirty tongue – interactive tongue twister"

Orabrush, the makers of the brush for your tongue, proudly presents Morgan, an exhausted guy in a tongue outfit. This ad was shot all in one take and took 30 attempts over a three-day period to get right, hence why Morgan looks a little tired.

In this ad the user can make Morgan dance until their heart is content. Gimmicky? Yes. Fun? Absolutely. Though do not press #4. Some things can not be unseen. (You have been warned.)

Do not press number 4

Coors Light "Climb on in 360º – big wave surfing"

Another 360 video, this GoPro-esque campaign by Coors released this month allows users to experience the thrill of surfing (and having a social life) from the comfort of their screens. Who doesn't want to rip a few waves then head back for a BBQ on the beach?

Skittles "Touch: Cat"

Part of a series of Skittles touch videos, this ad is by far one of the oddest and most popular. Due to its popularity, there have been many parody ads which are equally as disturbing, but we shall stick with Skittles for now. Cat lovers – this one is for you.