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WHY WAS THIS CAMPAIGN LAUNCHED?
Tourism has always been a major industry for Iceland, representing 39% of the country’s total export revenue at 520 billion kronor in 2018. In 2019, the number of inbound tourists was approximately two million, while in 2020, the number dropped drastically down to 486 thousand visitors, a whopping 76 percent, one consequence of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Back on June 15th, 2020, Iceland has begun to welcome back visitors from all of EU and the UK. Tourists just need to have a mandatory 14-day quarantine or paid 60 Euros to have themselves tested. Once all of those hassles are done, travelers are free to enjoy a good time in Iceland with some restrictions to ensure safety.
To make sure that Iceland becomes a top-of-mind location for visitors who were considering traveling once again, a unique marketing campaign was developed in collaboration with creative agency M&C Saatchi Group, called “Looks like you need to let it out”. This campaign was run across the US, UK, Germany, Canada, and Denmark.
The ongoing social isolation back in 2020 has left a lot of people angry at their current situation. Using this need to see the world, Inspired by Iceland has utilized Iceland’s natural beauty to transfer this energy into its wildlife in a one-of-a-kind campaign that inspires viewers to remember Iceland’s natural beauty.
The first year of the COVID-19 pandemic was a confusing time, many people do not know how to cope with the current situation, as frustration, anger, and grief began to grow, slowly but surely, fueled by the anxious, isolated air of that time.
Inspired by “scream therapy”, Iceland organized an event where people from around the world can submit their cries and screams, which they will use to broadcast from 7 speakers across the beautiful, stunning natural landscape of Iceland. From there, Iceland suggests a prescription that might prove valuable to these frustrated travelers:
It Looks Like You Need Iceland
The most attractive feature of this campaign lies in its promotional video, directed by award-winning Icelandic directors Samuel and Gunnar from Skot Productions. The video features people who are in various states of distress after a long time being stuck at home, unable to truly enjoy anything due to the ongoing pandemic back in 2020: mindlessly switching channels, bombarded by bad news, celebrating birthdays alone, cutting hair by oneself, and many more somber situations brought upon by the pandemic at that time.
This results in a scream, a shout, a cry of frustration from everyone involved, which are transported to Iceland via yellow speakers placed in many beautiful destinations across the country, from cliffs, caves, and waterfalls to urban cities. The video then suggests to viewers that Iceland is the perfect place to release all that negative energy, as a call to action appears, telling viewers to record their screams at the campaign’s website.
The video also introduces viewers to the second part of the campaign, an interactive event that allows people from all around the world to broadcast their screams to Iceland, via 7 speakers placed across the country’s natural landscape.
A particular factor that contributed to the campaign’s success is its ability to resonate with its intended audience at that time, which are people who are stuck at home and had developed cabin fever. Offering people a chance to broadcast their frustration through a few simple steps allows interactivity between Iceland and its audience.
The campaign was posted across different social media and managed to garner a lot of attention from international audiences. Its Youtube video received almost 8M views and 2.3K likes, while the Twitter post has over a thousand likes and about 385k views.
Ieva Paulina, senior art director, M&C Saatchi, added: “Most of us are getting a bit stir crazy at this point, and wishing we could travel to the places we love. We can all relate to that feeling of release when you’ve been able to let out your frustrations and get something off your chest. And what better place to do that than Iceland? It’s a magical, healing place – we wanted to bring that to life for everyone stuck at home.”