Google Maps scooped up Saroo Brierley’s heartwarming tale for their latest advertising campaign.
Saroo Brierley, born Saroo Munshi Khan, was separated from his older brother after falling asleep on a passenger train in Burhanpur, India. Saroo was eventually adopted by the Brierley family and moved to Tasmania, yet his photographic memory haunted him; he yearned for his family. Saroo took to Google Maps and Google Earth in an attempt to jog his memory and piece together the day he was separated from his brother at the train station in Burhanpur. Thanks to his amazing memory and keen sense of direction, Saroo was able virtually find his way back to his neighbourhood. He later travelled to India and was reunited with his birth mother and siblings – all because of Google Maps.
Google turned Saroo’s quest for his family into their latest online advertising campaign. We couldn’t think of a better way to promote your product – Saroo’s heartwarming tale was made possible with the use of Google Maps and Google Earth. This is an excellent advertising campaign – it’s captivating, it’s emotional, and it’s well done.
Although the advertisement is three minutes long, much longer than most, the viewer barely notices the length as they are so consumed by Saroo’s story. The best part? The viewer has no idea it’s an advertisement until the Google Maps symbol pops up at the very end. This touching tale views more like a short film than a commercial, if not due to the absent logo, but also the dynamic cinematography and documentary-like style of the clip. Google used emotion and a truth to sell their product by using the best tactic possible: a real-life testimonial. This is not only an interesting and captivating tale, but an honest one.
Google Maps – Emotional Advertising