Air NZ: Bear Essentials of Safety

Digital campaign to drive online video views

Air NZ: Bear Essentials of Safety


Air New Zealand has carved a global reputation for turning their pre-flight safety videos into engaging entertainment pieces. Our challenge was to use the talents of celebrity adventurer Bear Grylls to highlight Air NZ’s partnership with the Department of Conservation, while conveying mandatory safety information. 

The goal was to reach as many eyes as possible, drive brand awareness and encourage travel to New Zealand’s Great Walks. 


Tags: Air New Zealand, Brand

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The key to Air NZ safety videos is packaging the necessary safety information with humour – and making the best use of the celebrities who feature. We created a script that did both, giving Bear a thorough workout amid the spectacular terrain of the Routeburn Track. We also added a few extra cast members including Kiwi Bug Man Ruud Kleinpaste, a DOC Ranger, a trio of Boy Scouts, a tuatara and an almost mythical historical creature.

To hype anticipation and drive views, we employed a digital roll out that included a number of strategic elements. We created a short teaser video trailer featuring Bear and the elusive Moa, redesigned Air NZ’s YouTube and Twitter pages, and implemented a carefully targeted international seeding campaign. 

The release of The Bear Essentials of Safety was supported with a microsite and a behind the scenes video, and views were incentivised through a ‘watch and win’ promotion.

Bear Essentials of Safety 1

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Over 45,000 people entered safety video’s ‘watch and win’ competition.


The Bear Essentials of Safety has notched up well over 2 million views on YouTube and over a million through China’s equivalent video portal, Youku. The 30-second teaser video received over 340,000 views. Over 40,000 people entered safety video’s ‘watch and win’ competition. It earned 53 editorial placements across some of the world’s most popular websites, including Mashable, CNN Travel, Huffington Post and Daily Telegraph. The supporting digital campaign achieved an outstanding mobile engagement rate with over 10% of viewers engaging with our mobile banners.

The safety video was widely viewed, shared and enjoyed across social media. It was ranked #3 of YouTube’s ‘Most Watched Travel and Events Videos’ and #6 of YouTube’s ‘Most Popular Around the Web’ for March 2013. On Twitter alone, it generated 71.8 million impressions. An incredible 97% of all social comments were favourable.

The Department of Conservation also benefited, with interest in NZ’s Great Walks rocketing following the release of the video. Routeburn Track bookings increased by 68% and overall bookings of ‘bed nights’ across all DOC administered walks rose by 32%.

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