Secret Messages, Jewlery And Total Girly Fun with Lego
Funny Garbage worked with LEGO to create three high-impact, interactive Flash applications to introduce LEGO’s new fashion and décor product line, Clikits. We started by creating a compelling teaser site featuring a stop-motion animation graphical style and an original song by FG. We then created a build-your-own online “Friendship Bracelet,” which simulates the real-world experience of Clikits, and the “Clikits Designer,” enabling users to create their own online environment and products using Clikits.
As LEGO’s first major initiative targeting the girl’s market, the company was eager to create an exciting site, generate buzz and make the product launch a success. FG’s interactive tools focused on inviting the users to create their own content online, communicate with each other in a safe environment, and share their creations through email, bringing new users to the site and growing the online community.
An example of high-end Flash programming expertise, FG created a series of interrelated FLASH applications that communicate with LEGO’s back-end product database via ASP and XML and are able to display up-to-date product information in an interactive, graphical user interface. The applications include the Clikits product section, the Friendship Bracelet, and the Clikits Designer. For each of these applications, we separated out the display of the information from the data and content so that the visual interface is appealing and innovative while the back-end data is maintained and easily updated through XML.
The Clikits product section offers users a visual directory of the complete product line. The Clikits product line, which is stored in a Microsoft SQL server database, communicates with the Flash interface via ASP pages writing XML. This approach enabled LEGO staff to easily update the site with new products as they are launched without compromising the innovative look and dynamic functionality of the website.
The Friendship Bracelet application allows users to virtually play with the product and create a bracelet online, dragging and dropping the beads onto a bracelet. A second level of interactivity allows users to use a "Cliktionary" of pre-selected words to apply meanings to individual beads, so that each bracelet created contains a unique, coded message. Once the user has completed her bracelet design, she may email the bracelet/message to a friend, thus inviting another user to the site. The "viral" element has been an extremely successful way to promote the product, with the number of bracelets created and emailed consistently doubling every month the application has been online.
The Clikits Designer expanded upon the backend architecture of the Friendship Bracelet and enables kids to create a virtual room that has been personalized with the Clikits styles. Once a user creates a room, she is then able to populate her display case with custom designed Clikits objects of her own. Users may also browse other users’ rooms to see the wide array of styles that Clikits affords. While visiting someone else's room, a user may create something with Clikits that can be left as a present for them. Using the "Cliktionary", they may ascribe meaning to their creations in order to message other users in a safe manner. The objects that they create can also be emailed to friends, thus virally driving more eyeballs to the site.
The Friendship Bracelet and the Clikits Designer applications share assets with the product section. Both allow users to view products and their availability and place orders right out of the application interface.