How do you take a simple message and make it go viral? If you’re not selling something particularly life-changing or communicating a message that will shock your audience to attention, drawing eyes to your product or message is just plain hard. But with a little creativity and a catchy tune, Melbourne Metro Trains managed to do just that.
On train platforms around the world, signs warn us of waiting too close to the edge of the tracks or even climbing down onto the rails. The number of accidental train deaths every year indicates that many do not heed these warnings. So the city of Melbourne, Australia, came up with a clever way to communicate something relatively banal and turn it into a viral video sensation.
“Dumb Ways To Die,” a YouTube short video features a catchy song and illustrates all of the idiotic ways little cartoon characters can bite the dust, from taking expired medicine to poking a sleeping bear. The scenes are comical, yet tolerably shocking. To accomplish Melbourne Metro’s goal, many of the scenarios also involve train tracks – driving over them, stepping on to them, and not minding the gap between the train and platform.
Metro managed to take a generally uninteresting and un-newsworthy topic and have it go viral – earning more than 75 million views and allowing it to engage beyond its audience to effectively communicate its message. The campaign even spawned a free app with more than 18 million downloads. Check it out for yourself… and stay safe!