Innovative Use of YouTube Boosts a Cause

The Missing Person Pre-Roll from VML Australia on Vimeo.

If you love the Internet, but feel that advertising models fall short of the medium’s potential, take heart. Up until now, those pesky YouTube pre-rolls that say “Skip Ad in 5 Seconds” have been wasted real estate. Research reveals that consumers sit poised waiting for the 5 seconds to pass, glaring at the ticker.

Finally, someone seized the opportunity to capture share of mind during the pre-roll. Australian agency VML created this YouTube campaign to help find missing persons for The Australian Federal Police.

You only see images of people missing from your area thanks to clever geotargeting. We love how the ‘skip ad’ button was replaced with ‘Yes’ or ‘No’ gaining a micro-commitment from users. During the first five days, the campaign drew 1.2 million views. Yowzer!