Tourism Turns Contagious

13 Apr 2011

Tourism Ireland’s Flashmob of Irish dancers in Sydney is one of the world’s top branded viral videos, according to marketing magazine Contagious.  The magazine’s Contagious Viral chart, which rates the hottest marketing videos around the globe each month, has named the ‘Top Ten Most Shared Videos’ in March.  The list includes videos produced by big global brands like Volkswagen and adidas, with Tourism Ireland’s Flashmob video coming in at a very respectable number five. 

The Flashmob, organised by Tourism Ireland in Australia, is on YouTube, where it has been viewed by almost 740,000 people around the globe.  It features unsuspecting commuters passing through Sydney’s Central Station on St Patrick’s Day, who were stopped in their tracks when a group of Irish dancers brought the busy station to a standstill.  As the Irish music sounded across the station, the crowd began to dance; over 100 dancers, including members of Riverdance and local school children of various ages, joined in.  People passing through the station seemed surprised at first, but it soon became apparent that the dancing was completely synchronised.  The event lasted for over three minutes and was followed by enthusiastic cheers and applause.  

Caroline Brunel, Tourism Ireland Australia, said: "We are delighted that our Flashmob video has been viewed by so many people around the world.  And it’s really great that it’s up there alongside such other well-established brands.  Our aim was to spread some St Patrick’s cheer and to bring a smile to the faces of people in Sydney, conveying the message that the island of Ireland offers a really warm welcome, fun and spontaneity for our Australian visitors, as well as fantastic scenery and culture.”

The Contagious Viral chart had this to say:  “Tourism Ireland's delve into the flashmob meme is another newcomer to the chart.  Mimicking the hugely successful ‘Life's For Sharing’ campaign by T-Mobile, St Patrick's Day Flashmob 2011, which featured Irish dancers at Central Station in Sydney, Australia, was the fifth most shared global ad in March.”

The video has also attracted quite a bit of attention on Twitter, with posts and retweets from people around the world.


Further information:
Sinéad Grace, Tourism Ireland t: 01 476 3493/ 087 685 9027

Note to Editors:
• Tourism Ireland is the organisation responsible for promoting the island of Ireland overseas as a leading holiday destination.
• Tourism is the island of Ireland’s largest indigenous industry; responsible for in excess of 4% of GNP in the Republic of Ireland and employing approximately 200,000 people.
• Approximately 6.6 million overseas visitors came to the island of Ireland in 2010, delivering revenue of approximately €3 billion.  Overseas tourism business accounts for 59% of all tourism revenue.
• Tourism Ireland’s international website is; there are 45 different websites, providing information in 19 different languages covering every continent.  In 2010 attracted almost 12 million unique visitors.




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