Magnum, an ice cream brand owned by the British/Dutch company Unilever, has recently launched its latest ad / interactive advergame or we could just call it an experience: Pleasure Hunt. It was created by Swedish ad agency Lowe Brindfors. In this interactive game player take a young girl on a journey across the internet, collecting chocolate bonbons in an acrobatic style to the ultimate goal: the new Magnum ice cream.
Players have to guide the girl, who can run and jump, through a series of different websites, where she can interact with some of them. She runs into YouTube video, jumps into a car (Saab) or tablet (Samsung Galaxy Tab), drives a car or flies a hand glider. In the end, the girl finally reaches her destination and her ultimate pleasure: new Magnum ice cream Temptation Hazelnut with bonbons. At the end of the game player can also see their score and can share their results on Facebook and challenge friends.
During the pleasure hunt the girl jumps/runs into several fictional websites (with fictional hotels and resorts) and some real ones. Brands that can be recognized in an advergame are:
- You Tube
- Citrine by the Stones
- Bed Head
- Saab 9-3
- Tiger of Sweden
Our heroine’s pleasure hunt is an opportunity for different brands to be noticed. I chose the word “noticed” on purpose, because user/player can’t be involved with brands, even though it’s an interactive game (well, except maybe in case of driving a Saab convertible). The game is just a showcase or advertising space for brands, from Unilever owned Dove to the aforementioned Saab or Samsung.
The concept is not new, although Magnum’s case involves a bit more interactivity. In 2009 cosmetics brand Lynx (also known as Axe in some countries) used this concept for the Lynx Party across the Internet campaign. You can follow one guy’s path through parties full of hot girls across popular websites before landing on Lynx Facebook fan page. The brands that were used in the campaign were Quicksilver, MySpace and Heavy.
Similar concept was also used by Intel to “illustrate the incredible multi-tasking power of the new Core i5 processors”. They staged a minute and half long chase across a wide variety of programs that run on a computer desktop including iTunes, Facebook, Flickr, YouTube, Microsoft Office and the Adobe Creative Suite.
The idea behind Pleasure Hunt is based around the fact that the internet is a treasure full of pleasures, with the Magnum ice cream the ultimate treat or pleasure. Pleasure Hunt a game with heavy dose of product placement / ads (hence advergame). In my opinion Magnum created something completely new with this game: a unique experience that can cause mild addiction (to the game or even to ice cream), but with a potential for a “wow effect” and a high brand recall.
Those types of advergames have a lot of potential for advertisers, because it’s a completely new genre. I have to admit that I had played Pleasure Hunt a few times and I like it. But at the end of the day you have to consider this possibility: what if the links in the game were clickable?