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British Airways Outdoor Digital Billboard

The Challenge

Being is a London-based brand behaviour company and FelineSoft, as Being’s digital partner, worked on various social media campaigns on their behalf for British Airways. This campaign involved integrating systems for the world's first real-time interactive digital billboard.

The concept behind the British Airways Caribbean Live campaign was to showcase a mystery Caribbean island live and encourage real-time audience interaction to guess which island it was. The outdoor digital billboard advertisement in the Westfield Mall in London enabled shoppers to interact via SMS with holidaymakers in an unknown Caribbean destination, and ask them questions to find out more details about the island. If they correctly guessed the location they were entered into a draw to win a seven night stay on the island. The campaign combined live video streaming and real-time SMS participation via the outdoor digital billboard together with the build of a Facebook app for entering the competition.

The prime challenge of this interactive project was to ensure that all the systems integrated seamlessly with each other. From initially specifying the technical design to building the billboard application and deploying with on-site support during the live campaign FelineSoft were there to ensure everything went ahead without any technical hitches. The skills which were drawn on during this project were .Net, .Net MVC, Flash/ Flex, Facebook integration and app development.

Our Solution

Systems Integration & SMS Gateway

The key feature of delivering this project was the integration between the content delivery network (Central Control System), which streamed the live video, and the SMS gateway, which routed incoming texts to the laptop on the Caribbean beach. All the answers entered by the holiday maker were transmitted back to the Central Control System in order to be pushed out to the billboard and the Facebook app. FelineSoft built a Flash application to run on the billboard, which enabled the live video streaming as well as the playing of pre-recorded overlay videos that could be triggered remotely through the admin interface. The app also allowed the importing and display of the text messages/questions/answers in the news-ticker at the bottom of the digital billboard.

The admin interface allowed an administrator to log in and control what was being displayed on the billboard so that they could interchange between live chat mode or display pre-recorded overlay video. Another key feature of this interface enabled the moderation of the questions submitted to the holiday makers to ensure that there were no embarrassing moments!

Facebook Integration

As this campaign was to be generally promoted via the BA Facebook page we also built and skinned the Facebook app. The campaign fan page hosted static content, a live video feed and a call to action which took the user to the full blown Facebook App. Via tabs on this app, Facebook users could enter the competition by submitting their guess, display the live video feed and view a scrolling list of answered questions which appeared as the host answered them and view a number of static videos.

Delivery

On top of the standard QA/ testing carried out on the Facebook app and the central control system, one of the FelineSoft team made several trips up to London to carry out testing on the outdoor screen and was on-site throughout the event to provide technical support and  keep the screen running.

The Results

The campaign was a huge success for everyone involved in this project; thanks to the smooth integration between all the systems and networks and the thorough testing there were no glitches on the campaign launch and everything went ahead as planned. Our creative partner Being BA has been short listed for 3 Cannes Direct awards for this campaign in 3 areas (Ambient Media, Travel, Entertainment and Leisure, and Best Integrated Campaign.)

The campaign has been a real success story for the client British Airways too; they reported that they had a significant increase in their overall bookings to Caribbean destinations, with bookings to St Lucia (the mystery island featured in the competition) up by 98% immediately following the campaign. Moreover, the actual hotel which was featured in the campaign saw their revenue up by over 300%.

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