Trains travel in a straight line. If you get hit by a train, you’ve probably done something wrong which makes getting hit by a train one of the dumbest ways to die.
Rather than a typically earnest public service announcement, McCann opted for a mix of offbeat humour, a catchy tune and a collection of amiable animated characters to launch our message as an online music video under the compelling title Dumb Ways to Die. Within 24 hours of its launch on 16 November 2012, the Dumb Ways to Die song reached the top 10 chart of iTunes and was ranked number six on the singer/songwriter category on the global iTunes chart just 48 hours later.
The video has now amassed close to 57 million views and 3.8 million shares. In July 2013, Dumb Ways to Die was still the fourth most shared ad of the month. Supported by an integrated advertising campaign, it spawned a plethora of global parodies and spin-offs with over 30 million combined views, attracting massive global media attention for Metro Trains and its safety message.
The game app has climbed to number 1 in 17 countries including the US, UK, Canada and Australia, with over 14 million downloads across 135 countries, making it the world’s top iTunes app. It’s also Kate Moss’ favourite app.
Dumb Ways to Die was the most awarded campaign in the history of Cannes (with 28 Lions, including five Grands Prix).
More importantly, 14 million people have stated that they would be safer around trains because of the campaign, and Metro Trains noticed a 21% reduction in accidents and deaths on its network.