Red Bull Facebook Timeline Timewarp March 2, 2012

Written by: Tom Edwards
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The roll-out of Facebook Timeline for brands on leap day proved to be a showcase for brands that were a part of the private beta prior to the roll-out. One of the clear winners out of the gate was Red Bull. Not only has the brand done a great job of seeding milestone content since it’s founding, they launched an incredibly compelling scavenger hunt that spans the history of the company and integrates brand milestones in a seamless manner with the hunt.

By pinning the contest, Red Bull is highlighting the campaign for 7 days and ensures that any user that drops onto their timeline is met with an inviting opportunity to join the hunt. Terms and conditions are linked to an app that houses the rules of the contest.

Here is the app housing the terms & conditions. Note that canvas apps now have a width of 810 px.

Step 1 – The initial clue called for a user to go back to the 1st Red Bull ever sold. The next step was to identify the date on the bottom of the can for the next clue.

Step 2 – By applying an Instagram type filter and a clue to “look outside the box” the next date was revealed as part of the image frame.

Step 3 – Next, Red Bull pulled in a Spotify play-list image to unlock the next clue.

Step 4 – This clue took a moment as the border states this is a clue. Pull up the image and step back and “clear your mind” and the next date is revealed.

Step 5 – This clue took the longest for me to work through. Driven by a clue by Red Bull in the comments RE: CAPS, I took the first capped letters in the message to unveil the phrase “Find the Timecodes”. This referenced the 4 images below and the time in the YouTube video where they appear to reveal the next date.

Step 6 – This clues photo was tagged with “Anna Graham” and the comment clue was “a rag man” or anagram. Which is simply a puzzle to unscramble the words to form a new phrase. By taking the clues I was able to unlock the final clue.

Step 7 – The final step proved to be the most difficult of the 7 as it was based on clues using prime numbers combined with the final clue of 2=a & 3=x to decipher the final location of the Timeline Timewarp web-site along with the password to complete the scavenger hunt.

Once you decipher the last riddle you are taken to a “secret” landing page for one final challenge ;)

Yes, I won a prize!!!

The level of complexity associated with the hunt and the true integration into elements of timeline made the experience fun and engaging, but I question the duration of engagement for the average consumer to stay engaged throughout. I would love to see the level of fall-off at each given stage of the promotion.

You can tell some people really enjoyed the challenge

Regardless, it is the first example of a compelling brand promotion leveraging Timeline.