Here at CAMP, we occasionally receive entries for the same campaign across multiple creative categories. Often, they are optimized for a particular category and, while eligible for other categories, don’t necessarily excel in them. This was not true for FleishmanHillard, whose work on the Ontario Road Builders Association’s’ #SiteUnseen campaign
have placed them in a finalist position for three different categories.
We interviewed Jacob Porpossian, their Digital Strategy & Creative Program Director about the work his firm does, and some of the challenges involved in the #SiteUnseen campaign.
In his own words, Fleishman Hillard “is a global communications agency with 80 offices all over the world. We serve clients in Consumer/Brand, Finance, Technology, Healthcare, Energy and Public sectors and provide services like brand marketing, crisis management, digital & social, creative, media relations, public affairs, corporate and reputation management and research and analytics. The company was created 70 years ago and is based out of St. Louis. In the U.S.A.”
The Ontario Road Builders Association (ORBA) is a non-profit that focuses on the safety of contractors as well as goods and service providers working on Ontario’s roads. ORBA approached FleishmanHillard to head up their media relations and build awareness of road worker safety during the summer. They soon realized that awareness wasn’t the issue – it was more about compliance than anything else. Essentially: “what ORBA really needed was a way to shine the spotlight on the disconnect between perception and reality to force drivers to take a look at their own bad behaviour.”
FleishmanHillard addressed this serious issue using humour, as anyone who has seen their YouTube videos
can attest. The 3 videos juxtapose “traditional offices with construction zones to make drivers understand that construction zones are someone’s workplace”. The campaign involved heavy use of both digital and traditional channels.
This approach was extremely successful, starting a large-scale conversation among Ontarians on an issue that many of us paid no mind to previously.
How did FleishmanHillard come to this solution? Jacob walked us through their thought process: “We believe that every part of communications deserves creativity – storytelling has never been limited to creative fields. Whether we’re advising a company on the announcement of an IPO or developing television spots for a campaign, we take pride in our ability to deliver the unexpected. The best solutions to a problem are not the most obvious or the most outrageous, they’re the ideas that connect, the ones you have to dig a little deeper to find… Once we identified that the problem we were trying to solve was a perception issue it allowed the team to get creative. It was clear that Ontarians didn’t see a construction site for what it was – a workplace. We knew we had to make that connection and do it well for the campaign to resonate and be engaging. We didn’t want to tell Ontarians what they were doing was bad. They already knew that. We wanted to show them how frustrating and unsafe their behaviour is when it was done in the “traditional” work environment and why they would never tolerate it. We used speeding, road range and failure to merge as the examples because those were the top 3 behaviours that were consistently an issue.”
Ultimately, Jacob says success is all about staying true to yourself: “The most important thing about our agency is that we’re true to who we are. We’ll never compromise our beliefs to get ahead, because being real is better than just being different. By being true to our commitments, true to our clients and true to our people, we’re able to forge stronger bonds, tell better stories and go beyond in everything we do. At the end of the day, true connections drive us.”
FleishmanHillard is a finalist in the Digital, Integration and Video categories for our 2016 CAMP Marketing Awards. Winners will be announced at CAMP’s Awards Gala on November 2nd
. To learn more about the event, please visit: https://www.eply.com/CAMP2016Conference-AwardsGala
Zach is a recent graduate of the Schulich School of Business MBA program, where he specialized in both Marketing and Arts and Media Administration. He is passionate about the connections between branding, entertainment, and technology. He can be reached directly by email at email@example.com or through twitter @ZachGoldglas.