When Iceland defied the odds to become the smallest nation ever to qualify for the world cup, it was the fulfillment of a national dream. As one of Iceland's largest and most respected brands and a founding sponsor of the Icelandic National Team, all eyes were on Icelandair and what they would do for the World Cup. During the mens and women's Euro cup, Icelandair's television ads (mens, womens) become some of the most beloved commercials ever aired in Iceland, and the expectations were all about the next big television commercial.

Instead of just doing another big, self-aggrandizing commercial, we had some fun with the shared National dream that all Icelanders were experiencing. We launched the biggest campaign of the year, complete with the biggest commercial of the year, without telling Icelanders what it was for, or even when it started.

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We launched the campaign using a old medium in a new way, direct mail. We sent every single household in Iceland a sleep mask with the #DRAUMURINN hashtag on it with no other context. DRAUMURINN means "The Dream" in Icelandic, and the line on the envelope transpates to "What is your dream?"

Icelanders didn't know what to make of the masks, but they played along on social media. Mostly they posted cute photos of their children sleeping or them dreaming of their next Icelandair vacation. On an Icelandair internal forum, a group of pilots were convinced that it was an announcement that they would be getting a shipment of new long-haul Boeing 787 Dreamliners to compliment their new 737 MAX aircraft.

We followed the eyemask drop by launching a series of enigmatic teasers during the three nights of the Eurovision song contest, the biggest annual television event in Iceland. They were designed to hint that this campaign was about Eurovision, but were in fact the launch of our World Cup campaign. Each teaser ran simultaneously on television and social media with the "confetti" teaser being used in OOH and print.

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As each teaser was released, we updated the microsite to with an extended loop of the video and people's #DRAUMURINN Instagram posts.

After Eurovision, the teasers appeared to be increasingly abstract. But each one was a reference to something in the universe of the final commercial.

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Unbranded newspaper ads invited fans to have their dreams analyzed by a free telephone psychic service. Curiously, all of the Icelanders who called the line were having dreams related to Iceland’s playing in the world cup. We were in pre-production on Draumurinn FM, a Reykjavik-area pirate radio station that played the sounds of people sleeping/snoring over engine noise.

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The campaign pivoted a few weeks later with a reveal showing the team sleeping on the plane with the #DRAUMURINN hashtag in print and television, revealing that this was, in fact, Icelandair's world cup campaign.

At World Cup exposition games, we invited fans to join the team with a booth where they could take their own #DRAUMURINN photos.

And lastly, just before Iceland squared off against Argentina, we aired the #DRAUMURINN spot. The dream of a young player, Hörður Magnússon, becoming the world's favorite football hero. But true to Iceland's humble character, it was just a dream.

Creative Director: Daniel Bremmer. ACD: Baldur Baldursson. Creatives: Snorri Eldjarn, Haukur Alfreðsson, Magnus Magnusson, Iris Martensdottir. Directors: Samúel & Gunnar (Draumurinn), Logi Ingmarsson (teasers). Music: Ulfur Eldjarn. Sound Design: Nicholas Cathcart-Jones