With "Lost in Simris", the energy company E.ON has launched the world's first interactive Swedish crime story on Facebook as a chatbot. E.ON takes users to the Swedish village of Simris to solve a case together. They are looking for a lost lottery winner and along the way, they get to know the inhabitants of Simris and learn about the local off-grid energy system from E.ON.
What is really unique: it is a “choose your own adventure” story. In central parts of the plot, viewers decide not only about the course of action, but also how the thriller will end. They can choose, for example, which clue they want to follow next. Is the blacksmith Knallen being double crossed? What does the feisty Karin have to hide? Or is it worth a visit to the local cemetery?
The inhabitants of Simris play themselves in short video clips. The viewers see them beside pictures and text modules in the messenger window of facebook. What will be shown next depends on the user’s choices. A chatbot responds individually to viewers input and guides them through their own personal thriller.
“With classical communication methods, we are reaching fewer and fewer people. That is why we are developing new formats to appeal to people who otherwise would not be interested in our topics. The world's first interactive Swedish crime story on facebook messenger offers viewers entertainment, along with surprises, excitement and, incidentally, interesting information about energy solutions of the future,” says Carsten Thomsen-Bendixen, Head of Stakeholder Communications and Corporate Spokesman.
The agency supporting the project is achtung! from Hamburg. They previously worked with us on the E.ON Powergames, which were named “Innovation of the Year 2018” at the German Online Communication Awards in May. Our crime story can be found on facebook messenger under this link: https://www.facebook.com/VerschollenInSimris
The scene of the crime is not accidental: the town of Simris in the southern Swedish region of Scania, shows that it is possible to convert a village to reach a 100 percent renewable energy goal. The energy for the approximately 200 households is generated by wind turbines with an installed capacity of 660 kilowatts (kW) and photovoltaic modules with 440 kW. The power supply is supported by two batteries.
The innovations implemented in Simris are part of the EU project InterFlex, which comprises a total of six network projects in Europe. The aim of InterFlex is to investigate various intelligent network technologies in order to eliminate bottlenecks and thus enable the development of renewable energy in the power supply, now and in the future.