Everyone wants to feel as though they have a purpose and deep down it feels great to do good. Evoking these two emotions in a surprising way that gets people to act is difficult. Cause advertising is still a thing and there is so much of it in the world.
Union, a co-op of twenty marketing and creative professionals in Philadelphia, has found that surprising way for international charity, United Way. If you’re human, you will surely relate to the plight of this little dollar bill.
Rich Wakefield, Union creative, explained, “You’ve heard this phrase a million times. You’ve also seen a lot of sad videos about poverty, kids with cancer, et cetera, et cetera, a million times. So we thought it would be interesting to portray a dollar bill looking for his purpose – not being spent on ridiculous opulence like a $5 whipped cream over the top drink; not being worth enough to buy a lottery ticket; not even useful at the dollar store because of added tax.
“We wanted people watching to understand that every dollar has a use at a cause like the United Way.
The video’s purpose is to convince the 8000 employees of Holman Enterprises to contribute to the United Way as a payroll deduction.
“We have raised over US$11 million in the last decade,” Wakefield added.
It’s a lovely ad that Wakefield believes demonstrates the value of his agency’s model.
“Basically, Union exists because the industry has changed a lot,” he stated.
“The demands from clients and the marketplace has transformed exponentially. We were always brought up with the paradigm, Fast, cheap and good. Pick two. But clients want all three. Agencies can’t deliver on this.
“They’re too slow, too expensive and, a lot of times, not very good. With so many outlets for content, eyeballs have never seen so much. How does a brand keep up?
“Mix laptops and cameras with experienced creatives and you can have fast, cheap and good. We save our clients’ money because we don’t have overheads. I mean wouldn’t you rather pay for what’s in my head than overheads?
“If you’re a medium to small-sized client at a big agency, you’re treated that way. You get the B-C-D team on your business. Wouldn’t you rather be a big client at a small agency that has the experience and quality of work that the big agencies provide the big clients?
“The way we work with our clients is through conversations, not pretentious presentations. That helps get to solving the problem faster with great work at a reasonable cost.”