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Challenge

To reveal the latest long-awaited installment of the $10 billion Call of Duty franchise: Infinite Warfare, Activision infiltrated the best-selling game of 2015, Call of Duty: Black Ops III, to engage gamers directly with a special message in an interactive adventure like never before. Together with Resolution Media and OMD, Activision set out to launch an integrated digital campaign, amplifying the creative execution with Facebook Messenger, Live Streaming, chat bots and in-game takeovers to reach their target audience.

Strategy

Beginning Friday, April 29, 2016, new characters and an airship from Infinite Warfare inexplicably appeared within the Black Ops III game environment with a hostile takeover message, prompting a massive scavenger hunt and online chatter amongst the gaming community.

On Sunday, Lt. Reyes, the main character of Infinite Warfare, instructed Black Ops III players to head to the only secure communications channel available: Facebook Messenger. This message was also posted via Facebook LiveStream from the Call of Duty page. Once on Messenger, users could interact with a Lt. Reyes chat bot to acquire additional information about the game and receive a link to the highly anticipated reveal trailer.

Seeking to amplify the scale of the campaign, Activision called on Resolution Media to activate a paid media strategy to quickly increase visibility of the organic post and drive engagements with the Lt. Reyes chat bot on Messenger.

Execution

Activision worked with Resolution Media to amplify the campaign and its Facebook Messenger efforts with paid media, including a mobile-first Facebook native video campaign.

Beginning at noon on Sunday, May 1, Resolution began promoting the organic Lt. Reyes Facebook post, targeting registered Call of Duty players from Activision’s CRM database and gaming, sci-fi and entertainment fans through interest-targeted ads. Campaigns were structured with an audience-centric approach, enabling the Resolution team to quickly draw insights and optimize performance in real time. The Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare “Hostile Takeover” campaign was supported with paid media for approximately eight hours.

Leveraging a combination of digital communication tools, the team rallied from remote locations to setup, launch and execute the campaigns while providing frequent updates to the client and other stakeholders throughout the day.

Results

By Sunday afternoon, the in-game announcement and Facebook LiveStream were already being widely praised by the gaming community. At the conclusion of the paid amplification portion of the Infinite Warfare “Hostile Takeover” campaign, Resolution’s results for Activision were remarkable:
• More than 5.2M people reached through the targeted Facebook campaign
• Nearly 1.25M video views at a 24% view-through rate
• More than 15.7K ad clicks of the Messenger link
• 17K post likes, 3.2K shares, and 2.8K comments
• More than 6M chat bot messages exchanged