Campaign of the Week: Marc Dorcel, Not-so-easy access 

Porn site gives free content to those able to keep their hands to themselves, gains a fifty-fold increase in subscribers

Challenge / The self-proclaimed ‘undisputed king of adult films in Europe’ Marc Dorcel wanted to keep lusty internet browsers on his porn site, but convincing people to pay €9.99 ($11) a month for the premium subscription service was proving difficult in a market where free porn is so easy to access.

Solution / The bcampaign, created with Marcel, Paris, gave people the chance to watch the brand’s impressive selection of sexy movies free of charge - but only if they kept their hands firmly on the keyboard.

Users visiting the site were asked to select any video of their choice from the site’s entire library (see below). Once the film started to play, they needed to keep their fingers either on the Q, S, P and L letters of their keyboard or pressing down on two on-screen spots on the mobile version of the site to keep the movie rolling.

If they removed their hands at any point, the film would stop and the watcher would be greeted by a message asking them to return their hands to the keys. 

The campaign was promoted across Marc Dorcel’s social channels. 

Results / The agency reports that subscribers to the premium service increased by a factor of 50 and traffic to the website was 27 times higher after the campaign launched.

At launch, #HandsOff became a trending topic on Twitter, gaining 5,500 mentions and 13 million views. The campaign was covered in 1200 online articles. It also scooped a coveted Gold Lion in Direct at the Cannes Festival of Creativity 2015.

Contagious Insight 

A taste of the good stuff / The campaign is a brilliant, cheeky way to get people sampling the delights of Marc Dorcel’s top-notch content. In a market where it’s so easy to get access to x-rated material for free, that’s no mean feat. The campaign uses a similar approach to HBO and Claro’s (admittedly cleaner) efforts to get people sampling its great, but also paid-for, content. The broadcaster replaced the infuriating ‘Channel not available’ message on premium sites with the content, but only allowed people without a subscription to watch the left half of the screen in focus, while the other side carried a subscription message. The result proved incredibly irritating, but provided watchers with a taste of what they were missing out on. Dorcel’s campaign achieves a similar effect - giving people a glimpse into the quality paying a little more can give you, but ultimately leaving them lusting after the access-all-areas version.

Hacking the system / Predictably, viewers immediately started attempting to fool the system. Efforts ranged from balancing two kiwi fruits on spoons (see below) to, somewhat creepily, roping in a group of pals to help out. The efforts largely ended in failure, but helped to significantly amplify the campaign’s reach, creating a host of wacky online content.

Lusty Lions / The campaign’s smart, perfectly on-brand tone helped it to scoop a much-lusted for Gold Lion in the Cannes Festival of Creativity 2015. It’s also worth noting that #HandsOff came within inches of taking home the top nod, eventually losing the Grand Prix to Volvo after much deliberation by the judges. The jury revealed after the announcement that the campaign’s direct approach had impressed. Judy John, jury chair and CEO and CCO of Leo Burnett, described the work as a highly creative piece that was ‘so direct, you really had to try the product’.

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