Ad Council, Accion & xAd share their challenges for Do It Day New York

Do It Day Panel

Following last year’s inaugural Do It Day, where people from all corners of the industry partnered with brands to change the world in 24 hours, The Drum is gearing up for Do It Day 2016 with companies including the Ad Council, Accion, xAd, The Doe Fund and Amnesty International on board as challenge partners.

At a recent event in New York City, hosted at xAd’s offices in One World Trade, the Ad Council, Accion and xAd shared why they’ll be getting involved with Do It Day this November and what they hope to achieve.

Ellyn Fisher, senior vice president of public relations and social media at the Ad Council, said that the nonprofit will be challenging its Do It Day partners to create a program, idea or campaign that will help raise awareness of the Ad Council within the industry so that young people who are just getting their careers started in advertising will be inspired to contribute to the organization’s more than 40 social issue campaigns.

She said that while people are familiar with many of the Ad Council’s iconic campaigns, including Smokey the Bear, McGruff the Crime Dog and Love Has No Labels, people often aren’t aware that the many PSAs and initiatives created by the nonprofit are the result of a “brilliant collaboration of pro bono people from the industry.”

“Our challenge is really about, ‘how do we educate, inspire and empower the next generation of people in our industry to love the Ad Council, know the Ad Council, and advocate for the Ad Council throughout their careers?’” she said.

Accion, a global nonprofit dedicated to making it easier for low-income entrepreneurs to access affordable, high-quality financial services, will be challenging Do It Day attendees to create a campaign that brings a sense of urgency to their efforts and encourages people to act now rather than later.

“We’re trying to make a financial system that works for everybody on the planet,” said Accion's chief communications officer Jim Rosenberg. “Right now it only works for not even half the planet. What makes this problem different from other problems is it’s a solvable problem. Our challenge is, how do we make this issue relatable and feel urgent for people who can then act on it?”

Since xAd specializes in location-based marketing, its VP-sales marketing Ori Carmel said that the company is coming to Do It Day in search of an idea or initiative that will “integrate location as a component or infrastructure to enable social causes.”

This year’s Plan It Day New York – a day-long event where creatives, marketers and advertisers come together to brainstorm & come up with their Do It Day ideas – will take place on October 13. Ideas will then be executed at Do It Day New York, which takes place just weeks later on November 10. Both events will also be taking place in London.

Last year, brands including the United Nations, the US Forest Service and HELP (Haitian Education & Leadership Program) were challenge partners at Do It Day New York. HELP’s challenge – which was to find a unique way to encourage donations for scholarships in Haiti – resulted in a BuzzFeed quiz called ‘Are You Smarter Than A Haitian High School Student?’ that at the end asked people to donate $1 or more in order to meet the organization’s goal of sending 25 additional students to college.

This year's challenges

Accion Aims to create an emotive campaign that will raise awareness on the 1/3 of the planet that lacks secure means of saving and sending money.

Ad Council Create a program or initiative that will increase awareness of and support for the Ad Council and its social good campaigns within the communications industry.

Amnesty International To change the perception of refugees from being a potential burden to an opportunity to do the right thing and enrich our societies.

xAd To save lives and help victims of domestic abuse seeking help and assistance by creating a hidden mobile app detailing nearby emergency service locations and available contact information within their mobile phones.

The Doe Fund To help address the crises of mass incarceration, recidivism and generational poverty, we want to create a tool or initiative that piques the interest of U.S Mayors through demonstrating the Ready, Willing and Able Program’s incredible value to their cities.

There are a limited amount of tickets left for Plan It Day and Do It Day. To secure tickets, contact Alysha Parker.

Earlier this year, Do It Day was named ‘Event of the Year’ at the British Media Awards. Watch The Drum’s Do It Day documentary here. You can find out more information about this year’s Do It Day on its official website.

Plan It Day UK took place last week in London with challenges set by Coca-Cola, Airbnb, Amnesty International and many other brand partners. The outcome of the challenges can be found it the overview of the day.

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