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Results revealed: see the winners of The Drum Awards for Social Purpose 2020

Elvis's campaign for LadBible took the Grand Prix at The Drum Awards for Social Purpose 2020

The Drum Awards for Social Purpose celebrate the very best in socially responsible marketing. The awards highlight the most innovative and effective work, rewarding campaigns and marketers that drive brand purpose and serve to remind the industry that marketing really can change the world.

The Drum is proud to present these awards with the support of Winmo and Facebook.

In partnership with Facebook, we also created a special competition as part of the awards. Three teams from across the globe worked to show how marketing can make the world a better place, finding ways that we, as an industry, can help create more resilient businesses in this time of unprecedented disruption.

Made up of one senior marketer mentor and several rising stars from brands and agencies, each team worked on a brief to rethink how minority-led small-and-medium enterprises operate. The pitches were reviewed by the awards jury, who chose the EMEA team as the winner. You can follow the teams' journeys here.

The judging panel was made up of senior figures from brands and agencies including Ben & Jerry's, Kin, Good Agency and the British Red Cross, as well as Dora Nikols, a PR and social purpose specialist at Social Mission. The Drum is pleased to announce a competition in partnership with Dora, where entrants can win a free online Purpose DNA workshop.

To enter, visit the competition landing page and answer two questions:

  • What inspired you about this year's social purpose winner?

  • Does your company have a social purpose?

The results were announced in a virtual ceremony on Tuesday 1 December. Catch up below if you missed it.

Grand Prix /Best Stunt or Live Event / Best Brand and Charity Collaboration / Campaign of the Year (Not for Profit)

Agency: Elvis

Client: LadBible, in partnership with FreedomToDonate

Campaign: UniLad: The Illegal Blood Bank

One in four people will depend on donated blood in order to stay alive at some point in their lives. But an outdated, discriminatory law that puts a blanket ban on all sexually active gay and bisexual men from donating means that millions of potential donors are ruled out.

Elvis worked with UniLad and FreedomToDonate to create a visceral, awareness driving campaign, putting pressure on the British government to change the law. Opening The Illegal Blood Bank, the world’s first blood bank for gay and bisexual men, the activation collected enough blood to save 78 lives in just one day. A series of sombre, striking installations followed. The campaign prompted an NHS investigation into the pioneering new process and led to a policy change.

What the judges said: This campaign delivered so much - changed policy, saved lives and was creatively arresting and disruptive in a positive, refreshing way. A wonderful, fresh way to overcome an old challenge. Changed the conversation in an important area. The stunt activation was the heart of the idea and we loved the fact that the idea was a tool for change with key decision-makers

Chair’s Award / Best Digital Campaign

Agency: RAPP UK

Client: Mermaids

Campaign: Re-educating Google

A transgender child is twice as likely to contemplate suicide if their parents don’t accept them when they come out. Most parents aren’t equipped for this life-changing moment and turn to Google for advice – where the algorithm serves up inaccurate, transphobic content.

Mermaids’ goal was to transform Google from a hateful place to a helpful place. Searching obvious terms like ‘transgender’ brings up misleading, transphobic content. But by analysing search data we identified the unexpected terms parents Googled before the obvious ones. The team used those terms to tag honest advice, which meant we intercepted parents before their journeys led to hateful results.

What the Chair said: This is an ingenious idea that’s both innovative and effective. Tackling an important issue in a smart and novel way made a real impact on people’s lives, and used Google as a platform for good and not hate.

Campaign of the Year (For Profit)

Agency: Saatchi & Saatchi

Client: BT

Campaign: Top Tips on Tech

As the UK plunged into lockdown, the digital divide became one of the most pressing social issues of our time. BT realised it had a powerful role to play in providing people with the skills they needed - guiding them through the digitally dependent world of Covid-19.

Saatchi & Saatchi created appointment-to-view ad break takeovers in ITV’s This Morning and Evening News, each dedicated to a specific digital skill using celebrities. Content that was then housed on a hub and in printed how-to guides.

64% of UK adults saw at least one ad, 5.76 million learned/did something new because of the campaign.

What the judges said: This campaign addressed the digital divide in a way that was a natural fulfilment of the brand's long term commitment. The levels of commitment and execution achieved within three weeks of lockdown were impressive, and really helped position BT as a 'public service', not just tech provider

Best in Community Engagement

Agency: Revolt London, London Black Lives Matter (now called: Tribe Named Athari)

Client: London Black Lives Matter

Campaign: Black Lives Matter - Virtual Protest

The unlawful killing of George Floyd in Minneapolis sparked protests across the globe in support of the Black Lives Matter movement. But with the threat of Covid-19, many who would normally have attended the protests chose not to for fear of contracting or passing on the virus.

The team wanted to allow people to rally behind those who were on the ground, and show their support for the movement, by creating one of the world’s largest virtual protests using Zoom. Galvanising support for Black Lives Matter movement, the online protest reached a total of 4 million people worldwide, providing them with educational resources throughout and gave a platform to essential black voices from grassroots organisations.

What the judges said: This was a brilliant way to include people who couldn't get to the protest in person. Really reflective of the time we live in, it gave people an avenue to stand up for their beliefs without comprising the safety of others. Effective and culturally relevant.

Best in Diversity & Inclusivity

Agency: The Bloc

Client: EmpowHer

Campaign: The Call

Time is of the essence in a medical emergency. But bias exists in medicine, based on gender and ethnicity, meaning some communities do not get the same level of care. TheBloc worked with EmpowHer to tackle this disturbing, systemic problem head. They conducted an in-house experiment, asking an actress to make two calls to a real 24-hour nurse helpline with the emergency abdominal symptoms commonly associated with appendicitis.

Assuming two different personae, her performance highlighted the disparity in how white and black women are treated, creating a striking and effective campaign. The video garnered 7 million views in one day, led to a 415% increase in conversation on the issue and most importantly a 630% increase in unconscious bias training.

What the judges said: They highlighted the problem of unconscious bias in a simple and impactful, yet incredibly genuine way. The message came across really clearly and made a lasting impression on many.

A complete list of winners is available at the website for The Drum Awards for Social Purpose.