European digital marketing research company (previously Best Marketing International) monitors almost 300 digital award competitions Worldwide. Each month we handpick our personal TOP 3 amongst all the regional winners. Three years and hundreds of campaigns later, we were faced with a question: what makes a great campaign? It seems creativity and cool gimmicks is all it takes to grab a Gold Lion. We, on the other hand, see results as equally important. Our goal is to chase down fresh successful campaigns from all around the world and gather further information from all available sources.

With Cannes Lions behind us and shortlists for 2018 revealed, it’s nice to see that quite a few campaigns popped up in our monthly picks as well. Congratulations to all the winners! Moving on to this month’s favourites, it’s once again clear that Scandinavians are on top of their game as two of our top three come from Finland and Sweden. The first is a rather epic campaign by Finavia, where a Chinese celebrity took the challenge of living in an airport for no less than 30 days. Followed by a clever innovation from KAYAK, who made procrastination and daydreaming even more tempting with their brand new desktop tool. And finally, a brilliant attempt from Audi Sweden called Safety Code.



First Place: Finavia’s ‘#LIFEINHEL’ by TBWA\ Helsinki (Grand One winner, Finland)


Finnish airport operator Finavia has put a lot of effort in providing a superb customer experience. Clearly, their work has paid off as Helsinki Airport was ranked as the best airport in the world by Travellink in 2017. Finavia wanted to grow their market share both in Asia and the Western markets by highlighting their best assets. As a result, a Chinese TV personality Ryan Zhu moved to Helsinki Airport for 30 days. He lived in a small cabin, which was built specially for the campaign. Ryan’s mission was to test and evaluate all the airport’s facilities and services during the month. The campaign was crafted together with Gary Carter, one of the creators of the reality TV smash hit Survivor. #LIFEINHEL was a massive success with over 2 billion total campaign impressions, 17 million euros in earned media and 10 million video views.

Why we love it:

#LIFEINHEL goes beyond advertising and provides HQ entertainment. Apart from coming up with an absolutely ingenious concept, TBWA\ Helsinki really brought it with execution by working with one of the greatest minds of reality TV and spicing it up with modern engaging elements that transformed passive viewers to active participants. To be honest, looking at all the components that went into this campaign – it is a little bit daunting. However, a quick glance at those jaw-dropping results makes it all worthwhile.

2nd Place: KAYAK’s ‘Desktop Escape’ by McCann London (Webby Awards shortlisted, UK)


KAYAK is a fare aggregator and travel search engine. To inspire Brits to book their dream holidays, KAYAK together with McCann London tapped into a vastly unused medium: our desktops. The free Desktop Escape app provides images from 94 destinations across the world for users’ computer backgrounds as well as highlighting cheapest flights to given destination in real-time. With a single click of a button, one could easily book a flight right from their desktop. Desktop Escape resulted in 1 million hours of dwell time, 71 million global impressions and $10 million in earned media.


Why we love it:

On average we spend 7 hours daily working behind our desktops. It’s something we simply cannot escape. So how come hasn’t anyone capitalised on our numerous sinful moments of procrastination and daydreaming? Well done KAYAK for giving us another distraction and a ridiculously easy tool for spending more money. Clever and inspiring work!

3rd Place: Audi’s ‘Safety Code’ by Åkestam Holst (Guldägget winner, Sweden)

The automotive industry has moved beyond producing just cars and product development now involves different additional services. Advertising often reflects the same with several brands trying to hack burning issues in the society. Audi Sweden decided to tackle a widespread behaviour that almost every driver is guilty of. To stop people from using their phones behind the wheel, Akestam Holst wrote a special script for websites to install to block visitors who are driving. Audi’s special code detects whether the visitor is driving and then blocks access to the given website until users confirm they are passengers and not drivers. Today, the code has been activated 175k times.

Why we love it:

We shall see whether this idea gains traction or not. Nevertheless Audi is moving in the right direction. Similar projects usually rely on people downloading an app and behaving responsibly, both of which are problematic. Audi takes control out of drivers’ hands and hands it to third parties (websites). You can still bypass the block, but it requires an additional annoying step, which sometimes can be enough to stop someone from engaging in harmful behaviour.


Also on our shortlist this month:

VICE’s ‘Spreading the Word’ by JWT New York (USA)


Our team of experts: Hando Sinisalu (CEO of and Ann Kruuk (Growth Hacker and Co-Author of “BOGDM: The Storybook and Storybook 2”)