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Special Project

Special Project
From the 16th Annual Shorty Awards

Google Search Playground

Winner in Micro-Site

Gold Honor in Gamification

Audience Honor in Micro-Site


On our 25th birthday, we wanted to celebrate our users and what they love. Our goal was to drive a deeper emotional connection with users around the globe (especially Gen Z, who have grown up with us) by making the campaign unmissable across Google's most visible channels, including Google's biggest stage: our very own Google Doodle.

Strategy and Execution

Our concept was to build an interactive world where people could come to find dozens of hidden most searched things from Taylor Swift to Pikachu to Leonardo DaVinci. We called it The Most Searched Playground, and we wanted to make sure everyone in the world would be able to visit, and find something they loved. 

To pull this ambitious work off, our team worked closely with an illustration partner to create 2000+ unique individual characters and moments.  It was important that the world feel rich and diverse, so that everyone could see themselves reflected in the world we were building.  

Our team also created the overall UX/Design of the game experience. We wanted to create a game that was intuitive and easy to play for all users and all abilities. One of our challenges was to make sure that people who use screen readers would be able to enjoy the game too. Working alongside our trusted testers, we customized the game’s alt-text and created unique sound clues that triggered as you navigated closer to hidden moments. 

We also developed custom technology that would handle the loading of the illustration so people could visit from any device with any internet speed and enjoy finding their favorite most searched icons.

And for the biggest and most easter egg-obsessed fandom in the world (Swifties), we created an extra special experience in honor of the most searched songwriter.  By working together to assemble a series of clues hidden inside the Doodle and in the rest of the campaign, Taylor Swift fans were able to unlock a private website with exclusive most searched content made just for them.  Of course Swifties went wild for this, lighting up the internet, and helping to make The Most Searched playground most talked about Doodle of all time.


The Most Searched Playground immersed people in a world of beloved most searched icons, and gave them an opportunity to have some fun, garnering 123 years of cumulative engagement time and over 85 million most-searched objects found. 

An impressive 24.3 million users joined in on the fun, dedicating an average of 2 minutes and 40 seconds to the experience, while 1.8+ million people found all 25 objects. Notably, 52% of all users were from outside the United States, which speaks to the worldwide appeal of the playground and the most searched concept. 

Meanwhile, the game within the game — the Taylor Swift easter egg hunt — tapped into Swifties’ insatiable curiosity. All over the world, Taylor Swift fans lit up the internet posting about the easter eggs hidden in the doodle, and 150K+ fans found all 10 Taylor Swift easter eggs (one for each of her albums), 

This playful expression of the brand translated to significant love with a younger generation as well, with a 9% uplift in Google brand advocacy amongst a nationally representative US Gen Z sample.  All in all, the Most Searched Playground was the most talked about Google Doodle ever.


Video for Google Search Playground

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