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The Idea

Send sleuthing teens on a digital scavenger hunt to discover clues to unlock the trailer. MTV seeded clues in the deepest corners of the internet - from cast member selfies with barely visible phone numbers to phrases embedded in website code. If all 16 clues were collected, a fan could unlock the trailer.

C:\> DIR.BENEFACTOR\xxl5\xxP63xo\Ax3

06/06/2014 12:00 PM EST <DIR\> START

06/09/2014 11:00 AM EST <DIR\> END

> Enter the 16 encryption passwords in the correct order to unlock video retrieval data.

> Click submit to start encrypting files.

C:\> 

yellow

*******************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************

The Execution

Carrot created a nondescript microsite - whoisthebenefactor.com - to house the experience. Upon landing on the site, fans were instructed to "Enter the 16 encryption passwords in the correct order to unlock the video retrieval data." Upon submitting, the website would look as though it was crunching data in real time to give fans the feeling that they had "hacked" the site.

  • Friday June 6th, 2014 - 10:00AM
    MTV Teen Wolf broadcasts a cryptic message across its social channels.
  • Friday June 6th, 2014 - 10:55AM
    Users quickly figure out that the phrase posted leads to a very mysterious website.
    • 11:00 AM

    • 12:00 PM

  • Friday June 6th, 2014 - 10:35AM to 9:00PM
    Clues are posted throughout the day on Instagram, Tumblr, Twitter, MTV.com and even buried within emails and the source code of whoisthebenefactor.com
    • 1:00 PM

    • 2:00 PM

    • 3:00 PM

    • 4:00 PM

    • 5:00 PM

    • 6:00 PM

  • Friday June 6th, 2014 - 7:40PM
    Tumblr, Twitter and Reddit become ablaze with Internet sleuths desperately trying to solve the benefactor puzzle.
    • 8:00 PM

    • 9:00 PM

    • 10:00 PM

    • 11:00 PM

    • Saturday June 7

Saturday June 7th 11:40AM

Just under 24 Hours, users solved the riddle.

The Results

  • 360,000
    Page Views
  • 5 min
    Avg Time Spent on Site
  • 162,218
  • It got so much attention, it was picked up by The Hollywood Reporter

    View Article >