Hürriyet - Kilis 360
Media associated with this campaign
Overview of this campaign
For Turkish media, "360 Degrees in Kilis: A Town Where Being Alive Is Pure Luck" was the first-ever news story enhanced by VR, published by hurriyet.com.tr on June 9, 2016, creating an unprecedented impact on policies, public interest and digital engagement.
As part of the website’s new #Hurriyet360 series, all multimedia content in the story were aimed at putting a reader in the shoes of a resident in the southeastern Turkish town of Kilis, whose daily life was terrorized by Islamic State rockets fired across the border with Syria.
The story includes three 360 degrees videos, original footage, a photo gallery, infographics, an interactive map, motion graphics and an interactive quiz. With the first 360 degrees video, for instance, the reader could "visit" the most damaged building in Kilis, experiencing the horror of the rocket fire in places such as the children’s room of an apartment. The story also includes interviews with the residents of this buildings, as well as other eyewitnesses in the town, whose cries "were finally heard in Ankara" after the story was published.
As rockets were still falling on the town, Hurriyet Digital Content Coordinator Emre Kizilkaya visited Kilis in the end of May with video journalist Emre Yunusoglu to produce an in-depth, multimedia-rich story, which includes Turkey's first-ever 360 degrees videos with news content.
The story was based on more than 30 interviews with locals and officials and three hours of footage not only from the city center, but also from the border zone where the ongoing clashes with IS militants in Syria could be observed.
Results for this campaign
More than 120,000 people read the story on June 8 and weeks after that, Turkey launched a military operation against the Islamic State, creating a safe zone on the border that put Kilis out of the rocket range.
Beside the public interest impact and its engagement performance, the story was also particularly effective in terms of introducing virtual reality kits to a Turkish audience. The ads about various VR kits, from Google cardboards to more expensive devices, were placed inside the body of the main story and produced conversion rates several times above those of regular display ads in other stories.