IWC Schaffhausen, Facebook and JCDecaux Airport Paris have joined forces to combine a live stream on social media with out-of-home advertising for the first time. The start of the “Silver Spitfire – The Longest Flight” expedition was transmitted from Facebook to digital displays at Paris-CDG Airport, enabling thousands of passengers to witness the historic Spitfire begin its epic round-the-world journey.
IWC Schaffhausen and the Boultbee Flight Academy, in collaboration with Aviation Adventures Ltd, celebrated the departure of the carefully restored Spitfire at Goodwood Aerodrome on Monday 5th August. More than 400 guests were present for the special event, as the unique aircraft embarked on its unprecedented mission to circumnavigate the globe.
As the expedition’s main partner and official timekeeper, IWC Schaffhausen wanted to share the event with as many aviation enthusiasts as possible. The Swiss luxury watch manufacturer teamed up with Facebook and JCDecaux Airport Paris, a division of the largest outdoor advertising company in the world offering innovative advertising solutions in Paris airports, to ensure an extensive audience.
For the first time, a live social stream from Facebook’s mobile platform was broadcasted in real-time on twelve 70-inch digital screens from JCDecaux Airport Paris at Paris-CDG Airport.
The Facebook Creative Shop team collaborated on the conception and development of the initiative. The live retransmission of the departure was followed by a long sequence of a designed Flight Tracker, the purpose of which was not only to track the trajectory of the plane, but also to allow people to luxuriate in the beauty of flight. The Silver Spitfire event has therefore offered an unexpected break from both the intense life of the airport and the speed of the mobile feed. The solutions engineering teams of both JCDecaux Airport Paris and Facebook worked exhaustively to ensure the connection between the platforms functioned seamlessly, despite the additional challenge of live broadcasting.
As a result, thousands of passengers in the Gate K area of the Parisian airport watched aviation history being made, alongside an audience of more than 200,000 who were able to view the event on Facebook’s desktop and mobile platforms.
“IWC is a brand which is young at heart, always embracing new developments and innovation,” said Franziska Gsell, CMO of IWC Schaffhausen. “The activation of the Silver Spitfire’s much-anticipated departure, through the combination of a social stream with out-of-home advertising, is an excellent example of how to engage with viewers and create new experiences in the digital age. This collaboration demonstrates the pioneering spirit of Facebook, JCDecaux Airport Paris, and IWC Schaffhausen.”
Over the next few months, the Silver Spitfire will continue its historic journey, covering a distance of more than 43,000 kilometres and visiting some 30 countries on its way. The aircraft’s unique surface of polished aluminium is designed to highlight its iconic silhouette in a way never seen before.
Over the last two years, more than a dozen engineers and specialists have worked to restore the original Spitfire Mk IX aircraft, which was originally built in Castle Bromwich back in 1943. It is being piloted by the founders of the Boultbee Flight Academy, Steve Boultbee-Brooks and Matt Jones, who originally devised the expedition and who will take turns in the cockpit over the course of the adventure.
During their journey through the different time zones, Boultbee Brooks and Jones will wear the IWC Pilot’s Watch Timezoner Spitfire Edition “The Longest Flight” (Ref. IW395501). As the official watch of the expedition, this timepiece makes it possible to set the time to a different time zone by simply turning the bezel to the desired location.