27Names for Good: Part One

May 8, 2020

27Names agencies use their resources for good during COVID-19 crisis

Live communication and experiential marketing agencies across the globe have had to shift gears as the events industry has been hit hard by the COVID-19 pandemic.  From moving events online to offering contactless studio experiences, it has been an intense yet interesting time for us all. At the same time, some agencies have identified areas outside of their normal scope and used their talent and resources to offer support to those in need. We’re highlighting the stories of several of our agencies, all with unique contributions to different causes, with one common thread: selfless acts for the greater good.

Providing Aid to those on the Frontline with PPE Equipment, Structures and F&B
Portuguese agency leading the effort to aid frontline workers

Our partner in Portugal, UPPartner, is involved in a movement to help hospitals and healthcare workers on the frontlines. They are part of an initiative called Events 4 Covid19, installing tents to create makeshift waiting or triage rooms, creating plastic protection masks made in 3D printers, offering food to medical teams, and much more. We asked UPPartner Events Director Rui Batista to tell us more about it.

Q) What is the current situation in Portugal?

In our country the situation at the moment is complicated but not out of control. Portugal was one fo the last european countries to contract the virus, so we had a lot of learning processes from Italy, Spain, Germany and try to avoid disaster. We’ve been living in a state of emergency since April, and will stay that way until end of May. Half of the country is working from home and teachers are using TV and web platforms to teach.

Q) What was the inspiration or idea behind your project?

As you know 99% of the event market has stopped. Several industry professionals began talking everyday on a WhatsApp group dedicated to Covid & events. Basically we stopped to think a little and we realized that we have tents, heaters, 3d printers, catering, cars and vans, people and so on. So we created a movement www.events4covid19.org and began helping hospitals that were in critical situations regarding Covid19.

In less than a week we were already 200 companies, helping the cause. And things keep on. At the moment in UK the national events association is uing our model to do the same.

Q) Was this a solo project or part of an association or network of other agencies?

Is a project made of event agencies that only want to help. We have catering companies, Av´s companies, Venues, and much much more.

Q) How long did it take to get the project going?

It was fast; less than 1 month.

Q) What are you doing for getting the word out about it?

We created the website, and now another partner create the video. We are also making a PR campaign using our resources.

Q) What has the response been?

Amazing, much stronger than we could expect. The National Service Health system is already in close contact using our resources against this fight.

Q) How long will you keep it up?

As long as necessary.

Q) Have any new collaboration opportunities or partnerships resulted from this? Have any new doors been opened?

The main result from this, was that for the first time in Portugal all event agencies are united and sharing a common goal. I am sure that after all this ends, we will be much stronger together, than ever.

Q) How can others help you with your efforts?

Just create a similar movement in your countries. And start acting!


Big Messages Come in Small Packages
Dublin agency invents first timed soap to help curb spread of Covid-19

Verve Agency, our partner in Dublin, Ireland created the world’s first 20 Second Soap that teaches people how to wash their hands properly. We spoke with John O’Shaughnessy, Creative Director, about this unique project.

Q) Please give us some brief info about the situation in Ireland at the time of this project.

When we began this project, the crisis was just unfolding in Ireland. We hadn’t gone into full lock down yet but many people were already worried and uncertain about what actions they should take.

Q) What was the inspiration or idea behind it?

We read a statistic that only 5% of people were washing their hands properly – and hand washing was one of the best ways to stop the spread of Covid-19. It is recommended that you wash your hands for at least 20 seconds. We produced tiny bars of soap that disappeared after 20 seconds and delivered them free of charge to hundreds of people as part of an awareness campaign.

Q) Who was your target group?

We wanted to reach as many members of the general public as possible.

Q) Why did you launch this campaign?

With so much uncertainty and misinformation online, we wanted to do something positive that would contribute to stopping the virus.

Q) How was the work distributed within the agency?

This was a collaboration within our agency between different departments – creative, digital, communications and production. The only real cost to the agency was the postage and some soap – everything else was produced in-house.

Q) How long did it take to get the project going? How long did it last?

We had the initial phase of the campaign built within 3 days – webpage, social media assets and of course the little bars of soap themselves. The first phase ran for 1.5 weeks where we posted out hundreds of the little 20 Second Soaps free of charge and encouraged people to spread the message about hand washing online. The second phase ran for a further week where we showed people how to make their own 20 Second Soap.

Q) What did you do to get the word out about it? What was the response?

The campaign spread virally through people posting the 20 Second Soaps they received in the post.  We sent press releases to media and onto clients. The response has been amazing – our communications team estimated a PR reach of over 2.2 million so far! In Ireland it’s been featured on national radio stations and across media like The Irish Times. Outside of Ireland, it got some nice coverage on the Drum and LBBonline in the UK – and even reached Club de Criacao in Brazil!

Q) Have any new collaboration opportunities or partnerships resulted from this? Have any new doors been opened?

Our main aim was to make a positive contribution to the crisis and also to show that despite the quarantine, Verve is still open for business! We had a lovely response from existing and new clients as well as family and friends.

Q) How can others help you with your efforts?

Keep washing your hands for at least 20 seconds – and help us spread the word!

Creating Connections for Those Who Can Help with Those in Need
German agency creates online platform to connect locals

“Our community is stronger than a virus.” During the first week of the lockdown that began in March, Rheine based agency CONCEPT X launched a digital platform to connect local individuals and businesses in need of help with those able to offer it: Rheine Gegen Corona

The response to this initiative was extremely well-received, with thousands of site visits in just a few days. Ulf Gassner, Managing Partner of CONCEPT X, explains why he initiated the project and how, while helping others, he sees the positive impact on his agency as well. “The basis for this was our communicative competence and the potential through capacities that were freed up, since we too are affected by declining sales. We therefore used our skills pro-bono wisely. We promoted the initiative across all social channels, newspapers and radio. And the response was great. Both through the attention for this project, and in particular the registration of those who want to help and the resulting concrete help for those who need help. At the regional level, as an agency, we were able to gain more image/purpose and further awareness.” A win-win for all involved!

The agency didn’t stop there, however. They also published a white paper focusing on Brand Communication in times of Corona. “The majority of the first reaction to the economic lock down was a shock for many companies. This applies both to our customers and beyond. The creative competence of us makes dealing with these challenges a little easier, because the creativity bundled with strategic competence can show ways that open up new opportunities. This is exactly our core competence, which we used to formulate a white paper. For this we used our communication channels and connections in business networks to share the information. In addition to a further gain in image, new contacts for the future arise.” – Ulf Gassner

We hope you enjoyed reading and are inspired to initiate your own project for good! Need even more inspiration? Check back soon, as we’ll be sharing even more stories from our partners in Part 2.

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