In our weekly round up series, we’re taking a look at HBO’s Game Of Thrones #CatchDrogon campaign.
HBO’s Game Of Thrones
Whether you watch the show or not, everyone who isn’t living under a rock/without a television/in the dark ages knows about the swords and sorcery series.
The television adaptation of George R.R. Martin’s A Song Of Ice And Fire books spans genres and has enthralled viewers around the world; it’s often described as the biggest show on television.
Previous campaigns to whip up excitement around the hotly anticipated series include a 40-foot dragon skull found on a Dorset beach, as well as digital campaigns such as #RoastJoffrey and #TaketheThrone
The show inevitably has a large following on social media, including: 14.8 million Likes on Facebook, 2.39 million Twitter followers, over 1.1 million YouTube Subscribers and over 5,700 followers on Google+.
In the build up to the premiere of Game of Thrones’ fifth season, HBO worked with 360i to create a social media campaign that not only engaged fans but also aligned social content with out-of-home and display ads.
Drogon, the largest of the show’s three dragons, went missing toward the end of season four. Fans were encouraged to lay bait across social media to catch glimpses of the fearsome – albeit missing – beast.
Fans who posted #CatchDrogon content to their Facebook, Twitter or Instagram feeds, then commented or retweeted before Drogon flew away, were rewarded with exclusive Game Of Thrones themed content and (in some cases) actual prizes.
— Game Of Thrones (@GameOfThrones) April 13, 2015
The campaign ran until the start of the season five US premiere on Sunday night.
From the campaign’s launch at 11a.m. on Sunday 13th, through to the Tuesday 15th (after the UK premiere on Monday 14th), there were over 58,800 mentions of #CatchDrogon alone. This demonstrates just how engaged the Game Of Thrones fan base is across social media, that a one-day campaign could whip up such a large volume of mentions on Twitter. As you can see below, the majority of tweeters included mentions of “GoTSeason5” too.
The campaign included a collection of GIFs, hosted on Giphy, that fans could use to bait Drogon.
These were shared by thousands of wannabe dragon catchers, along side thousands more user generated videos and images that featured the hash tag #CatchDrogon.
Michael Nuzzo, Creative Director at 360i Group, even suggested that “People may be putting their little brothers or sisters or bosses out there” as bait.
Game Of Thrones was recently declared the most pirated show on television. It’s season premiere is akin to a cultural event.
Clearly, there is an avid and active audience of fans online. Social media campaigns like #CatchDrogon are not about building awareness; they’re about engaging with the fans and bringing them into the world of Westeros to reinforce viewing figures.
With a simple to understand hash tag, #CatchDrogon was quick to take off and easy to get involved in.
Timing #CatchDrogon in line with the US broadcast is no accident. The campaign, fun and inclusive, joins its predecessors as an exercise in reminding the world that Game of Thrones is back.
Over To You
What do you think? Have you spotted a clever campaign?