On May 1st 2014, the twentieth anniversary of Ayrton Senna’s death at the 1994 San Marino Grand Prix, British racing team McLaren joined the rest of the sport in commemorating his life. Their aim was to create a touching film that encapsulated their relationship with him – he enjoyed his most celebrated years there when he, and McLaren, dominated the sport, and had a particularly close relationship with team boss Ron Dennis. The objective: to do his contribution to the sport justice and stand out from the rest of the commemorations, cut through the chatter and have lasting impact.
The film was released digitally across multiple platforms including McLaren’s website, Twitter handle, YouTube channel and throughout the online community via blogs, e-zines and F1 fan sites. Devout Formula 1 fans were a reliable, captive audience – engaging the general public was the wider aim, using the innate pull and universal intrigue of Senna’s tragic death and an emotional, storytelling treatment from Senna himself to connect with a more diverse audience.
Measures of Impact and Effectiveness
#RememberSenna created huge online pick up and an organic viral spread and it topped Viral charts and YouTube trending charts. The hashtag dominated Twitter communications and the film was widely shared across the F1 industry by established journalists, bloggers, fans and racing teams alike, including featuring in the online versions of the Daily Telegraph, the Daily Mirror, the Independent and motorsport industry heavyweights Autoweek and Pitpass.