How can a historical hunt for a missing SS Officer increase museum visits by 30%?
Kamp Amersfoort is not always one of the first Dutch concentration camps that comes to mind, although 47,000 people were imprisoned there. How could we help attract more visitors to the camp? The solution: a rather unique story, belonging to the camp’s founder who mysteriously disappeared: Walter Heinrich.
Telling the story: podcast maker Jordy Hubers and Floris van Dijk, Head of Research at the National Museum Kamp Amersfoort. For eight weeks their informative podcast managed to take hold of the number one spot in Apple Podcast’s history charts. And the camp itself? Kamp Amersfoort saw a 30% increase in visitors.
About National Monument Kamp Amersfoort
When you say, ‘Second World War’ and ‘concentration camps in the Netherlands’, many will immediately say Kamp Westerbork or Kamp Vught. But Kamp Amersfoort is not mentioned that often. Yet 47,000 people were imprisoned there, 652 people died and a horrific regime ruled behind its gates.
So, as National Monument Kamp Amersfoort, how do you ensure that visitors find your museum? How can we combine physical and digital experiences and let them enhance each other? How do you tell a substantive story to a wide audience and thereby interest potential visitors?
NOS news broadcast about this podcast
iO and Nationaal Monument Kamp Amersfoort created an eight-part podcast: The Missing SS Officer. A poignant audio story that has been listened to almost a million times.
“As makers, our starting point was the same as always: we wanted to tell a solid, exciting story. A podcast that combines entertainment and education. With healthy listener numbers, that are already well on the way to reaching the one million mark, we succeeded in introducing a wider audience to the National Monument Kamp Amersfoort.”
Jordy Hubers, Podcast Creative iO
The collaboration in numbers
One of the best branded podcasts in the Netherlands
The podcast was promoted only on owned channels and with free publicity. Thanks to articles and features in the national and regional media, the podcast went viral. With over 850,000 downloads, it made its way to top-ranking positions on both Apple Podcasts and Spotify.
But that's not all. The initial aim was to attract more visitors to National Monument Kamp Amersfoort. And it worked. After the podcast went live in October 2022, the camp saw a visitor increase of 30% compared to the previous month. Where the 'quiet' season traditionally starts from September, in October 2022 there were more visitors than in August.
An award-winning project
In 2023, this project won the following awards:
Dutch Creativity Awards
Lovie Awards - Gold in category Crime & Justice, Gold in category Documentary, 2x People's Lovie Winner
International Content Marketing Awards - 2x Gold in "Branded Podcasts" & "Best Content Campaign", Silver in "Best Content within Media Relations"
Esprix Awards - Silver in "Smart Budget" & Bronze in "Charity & Not for Profit"
“In the end, we put a face and a story to a war criminal who was previously unknown in the Netherlands — filling in some serious gaps in our shared history and knowledge. Along with boosting the museum’s profile and increasing engagement and visitor numbers, I think, even though you have to be careful making statements like this, that ‘The Missing SS Officer’ is the best branded podcast at the moment.”
Jordy Hubers, Podcast Creative iO
A strong branded podcast starts with identifying the best stories, coming up with the right format, and choosing the most effective release frequency. iO will guide you through the process.
Other podcasts we've created
- a podcast that guides young professionals in entering the job market.Look at this client story
Podcast: The Real Estate Podcastyour guide to buying, selling, renting, and leasing property. Discover now!Look at this client story
Podcast: War WoundThis audio story tells you all about the doctors' resistance called 'Medisch Contact' during WW2 in the Netherlands.Look at this client story
Podcast: "In Perspective" (UWV)For people who are – for whatever reason – not involved in the labour market, having a job is the best thing there is. You matter and a bright future looms on the horizon. The podcast In Perspective – In search of happiness at work revolves around the real experiences of people that receive the WIA or Wajong benefit.Look at this client story
Podcast: The GuideEntrepreneurship is a fun, but it can also be challenging. It's all about feeling and experience. Making choices, seizing opportunities, overcoming challenges and in how to access the financing you need to grow your company.Look at this client story
Podcast: 1347 daysA director spends an average of 1347 days on the board. On behalf of KPMG, the editorial board of KPMG RAAD interviews supervisory directors, directors, and supervisors from the Dutch business community about how they made it to the top and life in the boardroom.Look at this client story
Podcast: Time is running out!Birth, marriage, death. Divorce, move, new car. Every event in life raises many questions. How should I deal with this? Am I properly insured? Difficult questions that generally require a long answer.Look at this client story
Podcast: The NOW podcastAround 140,000 employers used the first NOW application period in 2020. In The NOW Podcast we talk to Ingrid Arts, NOW programme manager at the UWV.Look at this client story