HOLLYWOOD A-lister Will Ferrell boasted: “Norway, we’re going to crush those losers!” in the Superbowl ad for General Motors, after being outraged that the Scandi nation was leading the US in the use of electric cars.
It was a fun ad that attracted worldwide attention – but how Norway responded has been a sensation which has won Visit Norway, the country’s official tourism bureau, an award in the marketing equivalent of the Oscars.
In the Superbowl film, Will assembles a team to put things right and sets off in his new GM electric car – but has no idea where Norway is. Members of his squad mistakenly arrive in Finland and Sweden instead.
Hitting back, in the same spirit of fun, Visit Norway mounted a viral campaign roping in local schoolchildren to put Will straight and assure him that he is still welcome anytime – but they haven’t seen him yet.
Here’s the original ad…
And here’s how the story of how Norway responded, with staggering success…
The campaign landed Visit Norway both a platinum award and ‘Best In Show’ trophy at the HSMAI Adrian Awards, staged in Florida on Wednesday, which recognise excellence in hospitality advertising, digital marketing, and public relations.
In total, Visit Norway picked up ten awards on the night, with the platinum gongs for “Where Is Will” and another campaign under the banner “13,000 Reasons To Visit Northern Norway”, which included a four-hour video of comedian Truls Svendsen reading them all!
Norway’s winning team Picture: Marius Flåskjer, HSMAI Europe
“This is crazy!” said Jon Erik Skaret, Head of Creative at Visit Norway. “The fact that the Visit Norway team deliver this level of creativity in the middle of a pandemic from home office says something about what we’re made of.
“A huge thank you to our extended family: Trigger, Maverix, Mediacom, Try Råd, OBHF and Plan B, who have all pushed us to create sensational results for Norwegian travel worldwide.”