SWEDEN - The advertising bureau behind a novel advertising campaign for Sweden's largest fund company AMF Pension has won a prestigious prize lauding the campaign's success in making young people think about pensions.

This year's Media Lion Grand Prix at the Lions awards in Cannes was presented to Forsman & Bodenfors, a Gothenburg-based advertising bureau, for the ‘MMS' campaign created for AMF - a multi-platform advertising campaign which managed to engage a young target audience in the idea of building up a pension.

Interactivity with its audience was the key to the campaign which invited young Swedes to upload photographs of themselves on a website or send them via MMS and have them reworked to show what they might look like aged 70.

The portrait could then be downloaded and shared with friends - an approach intended to encourage young people to think what it might be like to be old one day, encouraging them to think about investing in a pension.

Additionally, there were television commercials featuring famous young Swedes, visiting their future, elderly-self, all of which were designed to make young people think about pensions and whether they had enough saved for a comfortable retirement.

AMF Pension advertised during two weeks on billboards and during four weeks in prime time TV spots featuring two Swedish celebrities aged thirty years, Charlotte Perelli and Peter Siepen.

(A link to some of the films can be viewed here, through an explanation of the campaign, shown to Cannes Lions judges and posted on YouTube, and used with the permission of Forsman & Bodensfors)

Jacob Nelson, who headed the project, said AMF Pension was already a well-known brand, though few knew what AMF stood for and few young people were motivated by previous adverts.

Forman & Bodenfors said that as a result of the new advertising approach, which ran over three weeks in total, web site traffic tripled during the first three days of the campaign, and after one month the ageing application had produced 323.000 uses (9.1m inhabitants of Sweden).

Moreover, 262.000 of the uses during the one month campaign period were made via MMS, and the mobile response to the campaign was unprecedented to any previous mobile campaign in Sweden.

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