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Dumb Ways to Die: Metro Trains Melbourne safety campaign goes viral

In an effort to reduce the number of accidents on its rail network, Metro Trains Melbourne has launched a campaign developed by Erikson McCann.

Entitled ‘Dumb Ways to Die’, the cartoon ad shows a series of characters dying in novel ways and ends with three characters dying in preventable train accidents.

The ad went viral following its launch on 17 November, racking up 5.2 million views within five days. To date, it has had more views than there are people in Australia, receiving over 26 million hits.

Speaking to Australian magazine Marketing-Interactive Chloe Alsop, marketing manager of Metro Trains, said “the campaign is designed to draw people, especially the younger segments, to the safety message, rather than frighten them away."

McCann executive creative director John Mescall added: "We've got people eating superglue, sticking forks in toasters and selling both their kidneys. But truth is indeed stranger than fiction, and we still couldn't come up with dumber ways to die than driving around boomgates and all the other things people do to put themselves in harm's way around trains.

"The aim of this campaign is to engage an audience that really doesn't want to hear any kind of safety message, and we think Dumb Ways to Die will."

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Jennifer Faull

Jen Faull is deputy news editor at The Drum with a remit to cover the latest developments in the retail and FMCG sectors. Based in London, she has interviewed major business figures including top marketers from Mondelez, Unilever, Tesco, and Lidl.

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