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The Big Adventure


The Big Adventure was Network Seven’s big new reality format for 2014. Contestants compete in a series of tasks for the right to dig for a golden key; twelve of which are buried in a sandy grid. Ultimately one of these golden key would unlock a treasure box which contains a million dollars. The TV show had all the thrills, spills and drama you’d expect of a high budget production.

Whilst adventure-based television can be very exciting to watch, it’s a passive experience for those at home sitting on their lounges. So how do you share the adrenalin and fun with viewers at home? And how do you build and maintain show audiences, and fuel social chatter?


To achieve the objectives, Ansible realized that the strategy should focus on driving viewer experience and not just exposure. Viewers at home who were engrossed in Network Seven’s ‘The Big Adventure’ envied contestants on the screen. They wanted to be the ones completing the island challenges, and digging for keys in the treasure grid at the end of each episode with the hope of winning the prize.

Ansible knew that if it can get people at home more involved in the programme it would have a better chance of people sharing their experiences socially, returning each week to watch, and paying close attention to every minute of the episode. And to every ad break. Ansible created a companion App that got Australians off their couches and digging for keys in their own lounge. The App combined audio watermarking technology to sync with the TV show and unlock the shovel, gamification techniques to encourage competition and repeat play, gyrometer and accelerometer to determine the player’s digging technique, and of course you had to race against the clock.

Technically it was very complex, but to viewers it was magical.


To viewers around Australia this Global-first TV innovation seemed like magic as their shovel came alive. The App was the most successful TV App ever and ranked #1 for all free Apps in both iTunes and Google Play Store.

Across 10 episodes it amassed 253,124 downloads. With the show averaging 622,000 metro viewers per episode, this meant almost 1-in-2 viewers engaged deeply with the show and advertisers using the App. It was played in 125 countries and at times had 18,000 people playing per second. Social reach was over 1.5 million with people sharing scores, instant wins and encouraging others to tune in. Each person played for 25 minutes across the campaign and dug 18 holes!

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