Five times marketing helped change the world

Five times marketing has helped change the world

The world so often appears to be littered with protest and people complaining about the state of affairs, but what are they actually doing to change it?

At The Drum, we believe marketing can change the world, to this point here are five instances exactly that happened with previous award winners of The Drum.

With the Marketing Can Change the World Awards deadline a little over a week away we hope to inspire and encourage you to use your creativity to solve world issues.

Agency: SapientRazorfish

Client: Natural Resources Defence Council and Ad Council


Launched in 2016, this campaign aimed to raise awareness of food waste in the US and alter behaviours of the American citizens.

In America, 26% of produce will be wasted before it reaches the store shelves, which comes down to it being an odd shape. SapientRazorfish (formerly SapientNitro) agreed that this shouldn't be the case and produced the awareness campaign which integrated broadcast TV, online film, digital banners, pre-roll ads, press, and out-of-home to raise awareness on the issue. These communications drove traffic to, a website which educates the user on how to make meaningful changes on food wastage.

What’s even more so, the site’s content is bite-sized and shareable on social media to further spread their message.

Agency: Xaxis EMEA

Client: SURF Survivor's Fund

Campaign: Changing Rwandan Genocide Survivor's Lives With Programmatic

Digital media platform, Xaxis EMEA joined forces with TNS and Lightspeed to aid Rwandan charity SURF Survivor’s Fund through using programmatic advertising.

The campaign's main focus was to promote their newly launched website, which also provided visitors the opportunity to make donations and improve the lives of women and children following the horrific genocide in 1994.

This was successful through a combination of market research designed by TNS and scaling it with the help of Lightspeed. The agency utilised highly targeted digital advertising and data optimised creatives and drove thousands of new users to the site which increased brand awareness and a higher likelihood of donations to the charity.

Agencies: TMW Unlimited, DOOH.COM, Kinetic WorldWide UK, Mindshare

Client: Lynx, Unilever and CALM

Campaign: Bigger Issues

The #BiggerIssues campaign brought to the forefront of everyone’s attention, the biggest issues facing UK men, male suicide.

Engagement agency, TMW Unlimited, partnered up with Lynx and CALM (Campaign Against Living Miserably) and highlighted all the relatively trivial things talked about more than the single biggest killer of young men. Since 2015, male rates have remained consistently higher than female suicide rates across the UK.

From Snapchat to vegan meatballs, this campaign shawn the spotlight on how so many trivial issues dominated men’s conversations, over the single biggest killer of young men.

Agency: Field Day

Client: ARUK

Campaign: Share the Orange

In the UK, there are 850,000 people with dementia and numbers set to rise to over 1m by 2025. London agency, Field Day and Alzheimer’s Research UK came together with one simple message, “Save The Orange.”

Alzheimer’s is commonly misconstrued, so there was a need to convince people to donate towards the research that ARUK funds.

The film created, featuring actor Christopher Eccleston, asked people to share the orange via social media to battle the misunderstandings and made ambassadors of the supporters who watched the film over 10m times.

Agency: Engine

Client: NHS Blood and Transplant

Marketing Strategy: Missing Type International

One in four people in the UK will need a blood transfusion at some point in their lives and with over 1,000 people having a blood transfusion or organ transplant every week, it is no wonder Engine and the NHS Blood and Transplant came together to raise global awareness on the shortage issue.

There are various reasons that contribute to a dangerous shortage in blood donors around the world, so the collective brought together 23 donor organisations from over 20 different counties for the first global blood donor recruitment drive.

This was rolled out in a chain of events, internationally, with the letters A, B and O disappearing from various landmarks, brands, companies, agencies etc signs, logos and social media profiles. This in turn created a high record of donor registrations worldwide.

Ahead of this year's Golden Goals summit in New York, co-founder of Comic Relief and Project Everyone spoke to The Drum about how he thought marketing could change the world.

The Marketing Can Change The World Awards aims to show of what the industry can produce and do, if you bring together the brilliant minds of creatives and marketers. If you or your company, agency, brand, etc, have been involved with social good campaigns that you believe have done something to change the world, enter now. The deadline for entries is Friday 27 October.

The awards are part of Do It Day which starts with a hack session in London, New York and Singapore on Tuesday 10 October, World Mental Health Day to devise a strategy around mental health.

Do It Day will be followed by a fringe week from Monday 13 November, wrapping up with the Marketing Can Change The World Awards on Thursday 16 November.

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