Best 360˚ Video Campaigns: Sports

This month we have selected three of the best 360˚ video campaigns used in the sports sector and look at the different techniques used to increase engagement levels and reach.

360˚ Video Campaign 1:

Henrik Stenson Recreates Stunning 2016 Open Victory

Brand: HSBC

In this 360˚ video campaign, launched on 12th July 2017, we are immersed in the memories of professional Swedish Golfer, Henrik Stenson, as he recreates his remarkable 2016 Golf Open victory. Although this 360˚ video campaign hasn’t racked up as many views compared to the following two campaigns, this spot uses a number of clever techniques combined with a strong narrative.

The 360˚ video campaign begins to the sound of rotating helicopter blades, as we soar through the air with the use of a drone. We approach the golf course from the beautiful coastline and, of course, have the freedom to look around. The 360 degree video camera then cuts to the helicopter cockpit where you find yourself sitting next to Henrik, and simultaneously the noise from the rotary blades increases to heighten this sense of presence.

Something that is particularly notable in this 360˚ video campaign is that there is a strong and inspiring narrative – from mental preparation to the winning putt, we accompany Henrik as he recreates and remembers his path to victory. Throughout this journey, the 360˚ video creator cleverly applies after effects in the form of small 2D video pop-ups which display key moments from the actual Golf Open which add to the richness of the content and allow us to truly get a sense of what this once in a lifetime experience was like for Henrik.

There are a couple of other striking techniques used in this 360˚ video campaign. When Henrik recreates his first tee off and immediately after the golf ball flies above your head, the video creator cuts to a drone shot to make you feel like you’re soaring through the air like the golf ball. There is also some great logo placement behind Henrik when he tees off – a point where your eye is naturally drawn to. Another clever technique employed in this 360˚ video campaign is spatial audio. If you are wearing your headphones, you’ll notice that when Henrik or the commentator speaks, the volume is louder when looking directly at Henrik. However, if you look away, the volume decreases recreating the audio experience as if you were actually turning your head. What this does is direct your attention to the main focal point of the action and overall, make you feel more immersed in the experience.

360˚ Video Campaign 2:

Cliff Diving World Series

Brand: Red Bull

It shouldn’t be a surprise that Red Bull’s 360˚ video campaign features on this list. This super brand achieved a remarkable 2.1 million views* within the first five days of launching this campaign on 21st July 2017. It’s engagement levels are certainly above average, with 24,000 likes* and 4,748 shares* and counting. Although it seems that a large portion of this reach was down to some paid promotion and their large Facebook audience of over 48 million likes, this 360˚ video campaign performed considerably well compared to many of their standard format campaigns. This is not only due to the naturally more engaging nature of 360˚ videos, but also due to the techniques and stunning footage captured within this piece of content.

“2.1 million views within the first five days of launching”

The Facebook campaign begins with high energy music as we are made to feel like we have just jumped off the top of a cliff diving board, surrounding the striking Italian scenery of Polignano a Mare. As the camera descends, we fall in slow motion with it, with the freedom to spin around as if we were in the shoes of an extreme diving superstar and have the chance to take in the surroundings from an otherwise impossible perspective. Like the diver we are plunged underwater and simultaneously the volume of the music decreases helping to recreate the feeling of submersion under the surface.

Another innovative technique applied in post-production of this piece of content is the use of multiple freeze frames to show us the incredible athleticism of the diver as he twists and turns through the air. In one shot, if you look up towards the top board, you can see one of the professional divers jumping off, resulting in 15 impressive freeze frames. The following shot offers an alternative perspective as you watch a different competitor diving off the board in slow motion and the camera allows you to feel as if you are jumping off alongside the diver too.

Approximately half way through the 360˚ video there is a transition in the pace and mood of the piece, indicated by a change to more melodic and relaxing music. The creator uses a drone shot to allow us to slowly rise up to the top board from the water’s surface. Here, we find one of the divers concentrating and preparing for his adrenaline-pumping dive.

The contrast of high energy and extreme focus in this incredibly well put together 360˚ video campaign really reflects what this brand is about.

View the Facebook 360˚ video campaign here or view a YouTube edit of the campaign below.

360˚ Video Campaign 3:

Experience the Kia Stinger in Full 360

Brand: Kia Motors Worldwide

The final addition to this incredible trio of 360˚ video sporting campaigns uses a range of unique techniques as 2012 World Touring Car Champion, Rob Huff takes us on an exclusive driving thrill around the Cadwell Park circuit. This immersive video experience was released on 25th August this year and after three days had accumulated 494,000 views*. Now this video boasts over one million views!

Before Rob takes us for a spin around the track, he looks directly into the camera as he speaks to us. This heightens this sense of our presence as we feel like we are being directly spoken to. When we are invited into the Stinger, the 360 degree video camera is positioned in the passenger seat so it feels like you’re sitting right next to the driver.

As Rob speaks to us about the Stinger’s performance specifications, a semi-transparent 2D video pop-up appears inside the car on the passenger’s side. This overlay cleverly provides information about the car and track as we are taken around the circuit and taken through the driving process by Rob.

With help of a 360 degree video camera fixed to the bonnet of the Stinger, we get a new perspective at certain points throughout the drive. We are able to look around the circuit and even at the sports car from outside. The 2D pop-up also appears on the outside, so you are still able to refer to supporting information about the Stinger and circuit.

All these techniques combined, within this 360˚ space, result in an immensely immersive experience where you can get a realistic sense of what it’s like to drive a Kia Stinger and what this car has to offer.

Check out the 360˚ video campaign below.

*Data sourced from Tubular Labs