Arken Zoo ‘Heatstriker’: How Swedes are taking the lead

swedish_dogAnd so to Sweden as we continue on the Decision Marketing Creative Review Summer Sojourn, designed to showcase the latest marketing and advertising campaigns wooing our friends overseas.

OK, it might not exactly be at the top of everyone’s summer holiday list but they do get some sometimes, apparently. In fact, with record temperatures on the cards this year, there are heightened concerns that hundreds if not thousands of pets could be under threat from being left unattended in hot cars.

Luckily, help is at hand from the nation’s largest pet store chain, Arken Zoo, which is launching a major ad campaign to promote a new tool designed to assist in the safe breaking of car windows, to rescue pets in distress.

Created and executed by BCW Sweden – and supported by Swedish law – the Heatstriker tool combines an emergency hammer with a water container, and allows quick and safe rescue of a trapped pet, as well as access to drinking water, which is essential if an animal is overheated or suffering from a heatstroke.

The campaign features an online film (linked to US- and UK-versions), in-store print ads, newsletters, influencer collaborations, social media ads, PR-activation and more.

The film opens with a man pulling into a parking space with his dog in the back. As he gets out of the car, he turns to his pooch and says: “Alright then, buddy you can stay here. I’ll be back shortly. Just remain here for now.”

But as the temperature starts to climb, displayed onscreen, the dog is seen in obvious distress, trying to get out. When it hits 49-degrees in the car, our four-legged friend is seen slumped on the backseat, seemingly passed out.

Luckily, a passerby has a Heatstriker tool in her bag and smashes the window, rescuing the dog and giving it a much-needed drink of water.

As the “No pets in hot cars” endline appears, the owner returns, looking suitably ashamed and joins the rescuer in trying to comfort his dog.

Arken Zoo head of marketing Sarah Frelin Ekvall said: “As we are expecting a record hot summer, it is of utmost importance that no pets are left in hot cars. The Heatstriker provides an opportunity to act in an emergency by smashing the car window safely in order to save a life, as supported by law.

“Essentially, we hope that the Heatstriker will never be required, and instead serve as an important reminder that cars are for transportation only, never to leave a pet in a locked, hot car, not even for a ‘quick, few minutes’.”

So, what is the consensus around the Decision Marketing office?

Well, to be fair, the film works perfectly in building the tension of the situation and portraying the dog’s obvious anxiety, and it would work equally well in any language.

And, with the UK’s RSPCA regularly reporting over 8,000 calls a year relating to animals and heat exhaustion – 90% of which are about dogs in hot cars – we could do with similar legislation and the Heatstriker tool in Britain.

How about it, hey Sunak?

Decision Marketing Adometer: A “time for walkies” 9 out of 10

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