"The lotto is all about luck. If you’re lucky you win. If you’re not, you don’t. After a long time without a winner, people of Lebanon started to feel they were completely out of luck."
So goes the premise for the campaign by IMPACT BBDO Dubai that won gold in the Branded Content Video category, and which walked away with the top overall prize – the Grand Prix – on the second night of the 2015 annual Loerie Awards.
"Black Cats on Holiday" draws on the cultural superstition held in Lebanon that black cats are bad luck. After 14 weeks with no winner of the lotto, the Lebanese population began to believe they were all jinxed. So the lottery company Loto Libanais came up with the scheme to round up all the black cats and ship them out of the country to New Zealand where black cats are considered to be good luck.
As is often the case with branded reality TV content, the lines between fact and fiction are blurred. The cats seemingly never left the country and whether or not black cat owners offered their cats up for adoption, no one can be sure. But the goal of the campaign – to get people buying lotto tickets again – was achieved, and as sales soared so a new lotto winner emerged.
When the cats are away, luck comes out to play.
Overall, two Grand Prix were awarded over the two-night award show and 35 Gold Loeries. From United Arab Emirates, IMPACT BBDO Dubai won a number of these, including five golds for the categories Branded Content Video – Single Execution and PR Communication Campaign for Loto Libanais' "Black Cats On Holiday", the Integrated Campaign award and the Internet Video over 30 seconds for UN Women's "Give Mom Back Her Name", and Radio Commercial for Sofa Bed's "Pillow Talk" campaign.