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Liberation Lenses

The now-classic Snapchat Lenses are beloved by millions of users since their release in 2015. Used for still photos and short videos of a few seconds, featuring, for example, a dog filter and users puking a rainbow, the Lenses are now iconic on the Internet.

As a preferred global Lens Studio partner of Snapchat, BBDO NY came to us with the client collaboration of artist Major Lazer and Bacardi rum with a clear challenge. How do we create a modern way to lower the threshold of interacting with your favorite artist, and show the possibilities of the Snapchat platform?

Our vision was to transform the way users interact with Snapchat filters into a music video format, expanding from a few seconds to several minutes. Our mission was to find a way to tell a compelling narrative and promote Major Lazer’s new tune, by using two Snapchat lenses, each 30 seconds long.

In this, we found ourselves in unknown territory. Up until that point Augmented Reality lenses and face filters had mainly been used to convey one core action, for example transforming you into a dog or changing the sound of your voice. Now our mission was to leverage this experience through adding a storyline, extending the length of the standard lens from 10 to 30 seconds - while still keeping the attention of the user.