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Have you encountered ‘Charlie the Hamster’ yet? If not, you are missing out.

Charlie travelled all the way from the UK to Spain to feature in Volvo’s online film ‘The Hamster Stunt,’ steering a 15-ton Volvo truck up a quarry. He maintained full composure and poise throughout, emerging as a true star and amassed 3.2 million YouTube views in 1 week.

Volvo has really excelled through this short film, communicating information about their new system, which allows drivers to manoeuvre heavily laden trucks with the least amount of effort, in an extremely creative way, attracting an audience that would not usually be interested in their message or the Volvo brand at all.

This is actually the third of such stunt videos demonstrating the superior and unique capabilities of Volvo trucks. The first, shown below features Faith Dickey crossing a slack line between two trucks as they travel towards a tunnel at extremely high speeds.

It is a captivating stunt; I held my breath the whole way through.

So now bears the question, why are these Volvo ads so successful?

The answer is quite simple; the films draw you in right from the start; sends powerful, visual messages about the product and are only a couple of minutes in length.

What are your thoughts on Charlie the Hamster and Volvo’s other stunts? Do you think they are effective advertisements?