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Aussie rules in SXSW Interactive Awards

ASIA PACIFIC – March 14, 2014 – Two Australian entries topped their respective Interactive Awards categories at this year’s South by SouthWest (SXSW) festival. 
VML Australia’s ‘The Missing Person Pre-Roll’ won for Activism, while BBDO Clemenger’s ‘Remote Control Tourist’ won for Technical Achievement.
Sponsored by Innocean, the Interactive Awards is one of four competitions of festival, which also includes the SXSW Gaming Awards and SXSW Accelerator Awards.
Held over nine days every March in Austin, Texas, this year’s festival featured 2,000 music acts from Gaga to Chance the Rapper, 130 films, tech talks, live panels, workshops, trade shows, awards and conference sessions.
VML Australia’s ‘The Missing Person Pre-Roll’

The Missing Person Pre-Roll from VML Australia on Vimeo.


This was an idea to help the Australian police search for new leads in over 1,600 missing person cold cases in a cost-effective way. It resulted in a YouTube and world-first: Turning the first five seconds of a YouTube pre-roll into an engaging, geo-targeted mission person banner. 
To focus the viewers attention the “Skip” button was modified to show 2 options “Yes, I have” seen the missing person, or “No I haven’t.” If the user clicked “No, I haven’t” the pre-roll would skip to the video as usual. 
The pre-rolls used geo-location targeting to amplify the reach of the campaign. Over 1.2 million people saw the pre-roll during Missing Persons Week and 238 viewers clicked “Yes, I have”, providing new information on cold cases. 
Each pre-roll targeted an area in which a missing person was last seen, allowing the police to broaden their reach and accuracy in the search for Australia’s long term missing people.
BBDO Clemenger’s ‘Remote Control Tourist’

Unlike other Australian cities, Melbourne isn’t known for its landmarks. Rather, the city is a collection of hundreds of smaller experiences that take time to discover. 
The campaign allowed potential visitors to do just that before they arrived in Melbourne through a real-time, first-person web experience. Potential visitors could explore the city through the eyes and ears of four actual tourists, who were equipped with cameras to capture their travels through the city.  
Visitors were able to watch the five-day tour via Livestream, controlling every move through multiple social platforms and explore Melbourne via Interactive Google Map and its search functions. Through digital, the city was able to bring the wonders of Melbourne to the world. 
The winners were announced at the 2014 SXSW Interactive Awards ceremony on March 11. For the full list of finalists, visit the SXSW website.

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