Dumb Ways to Die dominates Sirens

Dumb Ways to Die dominates Sirens
SHARE
THIS



A radio ad from Metro Trains' ‘Dumb ways to die’ campaign called ‘Set fire to your hair’, has won the 2013 Gold Siren award for best radio ad of the year.

The ad, written by John Mescall and Pat Baron from agency McCann in Melbourne, also won a Silver Siren for winning the single category and the campaign also won the campaign category, announced today at a breakfast in Sydney.

The campaign, which included three ads (the other two of which were 'Sell both your kidneys' and 'Eat a tube of superglue') aims to spread a rail safety message, using a catchy tune and black humour.

It gained worldwide viral momentum when it was launched in November last year. Within 24 hours of its release, the song was in the top 10 on the iTunes chart and a video released on YouTube was reportedly viewed 28 million times within two weeks.

According to Metro Trains, ‘Dumb ways to die’ contributed to a more than 30% reduction in "near-miss" accidents, in the three months between November 2012 and January this year.

Writer of the winning ad and executive director of McCann, John Mescall said: “We knew that people didn’t want to hear our message at all. It’s rail safety. Not only do young people not care about safety messages, but we know that they actively tune out these kinds of messages.

“So our idea was to embed our rail safety message into a song: a piece of content so desirable, that our audience would not only willingly listen to it, but if we put it on iTunes, maybe actually pay money to own it. I guess the inspiration was to make a radio ad that was nothing like a radio ad, but a lot more like the content on either side of the ads: the music.

 “We tried to make a radio ad that was nothing like a traditional radio ad. It’s a song first and foremost with a subtle but unmistakable message embedded into it. The fact that a lot of radio stations around the world have chosen to play the 3 minute version of our ad for free, as part of their music programming, tells us that we may well have pulled it off.”

Chief executive of Commercial Radio Australia, Joan Warner said it was rare to win both the single and campaign categories at Sirens, which was a testament to the effectiveness and impact of the campaign.

“This campaign also highlights how well radio combines with other media, particularly the internet, to engage the audience and get a message across. It really exemplifies the strength of good radio advertising," she said. 

The winning writers will receive airfares, accommodation and tickets to this year’s Cannes Advertising Festival, to be held next month. The client, Metro Trains Melbourne, also wins a trip to Cannes and the festival.

The 'Dumb ways to die' campaign also won the 2013 Siren Client Award, the best ad voted by a judging panel made up of clients, with the writers receiving a cash prize of $5000. 

The Silver Siren winner for the craft category was an ad for anti-bullying organisations, including Bullying No Way, Project Rockit and Reach Out, called 'Earphone bully', produced by sound engineers, Ralph van Dijk and Michael Bates, from production studio, Eardrum in Sydney.

The national Siren Awards, now in their ninth year, are run by Commercial Radio Australia and are designed to recognise the best radio advertising in the country. 

A winner is announced in three categories: single, campaign and craft, which receive Silver Sirens as well as an overall winner which receives the Gold Siren. The awards are judged by the Siren Council, comprised of creative directors and producers from leading advertising agencies and studios throughout Australia.

Please login with linkedin to comment

Latest News

THIS
  • Advertising
  • Marketing
  • Media

Meet Your Judges For The 2018 B&T Awards!

B&T is calling this year's awards judges probably the finest ever assembled. As a chamber choir, arguably less so.

by B&T Magazine

B&T Magazine
Are You Dragging The Wrong People Into Pointless Meetings?
  • Opinion

Are You Dragging The Wrong People Into Pointless Meetings?

Donna McGeorge (pictured below) is a speaker and  mentor who helps people make their work work. McGeorge is also author of The 25-Minute Meeting: Half the Time, Double the Impact. In her latest guest post for B&T, McGeorge offers her tips on avoiding every workers’ hell- the pointless meeting… We all complain about having to attend too […]

Opinion

by B&T Magazine

B&T Magazine
Francis Leach Joins The New Daily As Sports Editor
  • Media

Francis Leach Joins The New Daily As Sports Editor

Famed sports reporter Francis Leach has joined online publisher The New Daily as sports editor. A prolific broadcaster, journalist and program host, Leach brings his encyclopedic knowledge of sport and no-holds-barred critical analysis to the role. “Let’s face it, sport these days is big business. I’m interested in connecting and contextualising sport with the big […]

AIME Appoints Eleven To Champion 2019 Vision
  • Advertising
  • Media

AIME Appoints Eleven To Champion 2019 Vision

Eleven has been appointed to manage all PR for the Asia Pacific Incentives Meetings & Event (AIME) 2019, the leading show for the business events industry. Selected by Talk2 Media & Events, Eleven will drive a global PR campaign, working with sister agency FleishmanHillard, to leverage international media networks across Asia Pacific, Europe, Middle East […]

Fox Sports Alexa Skill Launches In Alexa Skills Store
  • Media
  • Technology

Fox Sports Alexa Skill Launches In Alexa Skills Store

Australian sports fans can now tune into Fox Sports News live on their Amazon Echo device. From today, Alexa users will be able to add the new Fox Sports Alexa skill to their daily routine by asking “Alexa, play the Fox Sports live stream.” The Fox Sports Skill will deliver sports fans a live stream […]