Icelandic ad campaign receives international acclaim

The creative team at Tjarnargatan.

The creative team at Tjarnargatan. Photo/ Marínó Flóvent

 Keep Focused (Höldum Fókus), a memorable campaign that contributed to increase road safety and raised awareness of the dangers involved with drivers being distracted by their mobile phones, just received its latest commendation when the campaign was nominated in two categories for the Digital Communication Awards in Berlin

The campaign’s idea originated from Tjarnargatan, an Icelandic production company who also produced the campaign. First, at great success, for the Icelandic Transport Authority in 2013 and then again recreated the campaign in Norway with PR-operatørene for Trygg Traffik and Gjensidige in 2015.

 “The idea behind the campaign was to always search for innovative use of available mediums and develop new ways to capture the audience attention on mediums they are already using” said Einar Ben, Tjarnargatan’s manager.

It is therefore fitting that Tjarnargatan was recently nominated in the “Innovation of the Year” category at the Digital Communication Awards. The Keep Focused campaign will compete against campaigns from well-known corporations, Vodafone, Lufthansa, and HSBC among them, for the win. The campaign is also nominated in the “CSR Communication” category.

The highlight of the Digital Communications Awards is the Award Show where the winners will be announced, The Award Show will take place on 29 September at Kino International in Berlin. 

This is only the latest badge of honour Tjarnargatan has received for the Keep Focused campaign. As well as being nominated for the Digital Communication Awards it has also received nomination at numerous other international awards, including Digiday Awards in New York City, The SABRE Awards, and The European Excellence Awards.

The campaign has also been hugely successful in the countries it has ran in. It won its category in the Max Marketing Awards in Norway and was nominated for Gullenken. In its native country, the campaign won its categories at the Icelandic Advertising Awards, the Icelandic NEXPO Awards and the Icelandic Web Design Industry Awards.

Drivers distracted by their mobile phones is an increasing problem in Norway and the Keep Focused campaign managed to put the problem on the agenda. After the campaign premiered, distracted drivers became on of the most mentioned subjects of the summer and the campaign had a reach of over 30,000,000 and was praised in the media.

When the campaign premiered for the first time in Iceland in 2013 it received similar amount of praise and 35,000 people shared the campaign on Facebook. Recently, Tjarnargatan introduced a new phase in the campaign that used Snapchat as a medium in a groundbreaking way.

According to Einar Ben, Tjarnargatan is currently developing new methods for the next phase of the Keep Focused campaign.

 “For the past 11 months we have been working on a new method of combining technology and video that can get the audience directly engage with the ad. We are hoping it will become one of the main pillars for the next phase of the Keep Focused campaign, both domestically and internationally”

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