One Small Hole In Newspaper, One Big Step For Blood Donation

Marketing a charitable cause is theoretically easy. More often, you don’t really ask for money from consumers. However, any marketer would know that sometimes, charitable causes are the hardest to market because you usually end up asking for something more valuable than money like time and, in Hemorio’s case, blood.

The Challenge

The problem usually lies in the inconvenience of taking part in the cause. Habitat for Humanity, for example, requires that you work for hours on end to help in building houses. There are orphanages that need tutors that would require hours of your time everyday.

More often, there really is no other way to go about it. As a marketer, you just have to deal with the fact that your product requires that your market go through the trouble just to get nothing in return but emotional satisfaction. What you need to address, in that case, is the motivation that will push the market to do what is required of them despite the inconvenience.

The Solution

‘Binder’ emphasized how little it takes to save a life by translating what “little” means to newspaper. They pierced a small hole through an image of an arm with an explanation that the hole didn’t make a difference in the newspaper the same way it wouldn’t make much of a difference if one will go and donate blood.

They then organized a donation event. It is one whole day when people can go and donate blood. It’s not that they don’t accept donations any other day. However, the sense of “togetherness” added to the motivation.

The Result

This is their most successful campaign to date. In fact, it is ten time more successful than their previous most successful event.

If you step back and analyze the whole campaign, they didn’t do anything groundbreaking. They organized an event and marketed the event through print and below the line advertising. What set the campaign apart are two things. First, their effective translation of how little it requires of someone to be able to save a life. That hole, that eye-catching hole made the concept concrete for everyone.

Second, their “small” effort successfully caught the attention of the market. That is something that is not easy given the flood of “charitable causes” trying to get volunteers.


Advertising Agency: Binder Visão Estratégica, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
Creative Directors: Marcos Apóstolo, Marcus Saulnier
Art Directors: Leandro Bechara, Marcelo Andrade
Copywriters: Mariana Louzada, Pedro Drable
Photographer: Rudy Hühold
Video Producer: Manjubinha Filmes / Binder
Sound Design: Sonido
Published: November 2012

Written by Xath Cruz

Xath Cruz worked for the traditional advertising industry for more than 10 years handling international blue chip clients. She started doing digital advertising and marketing and web property development 4 years ago. She is also a screenplay writer with several full length movies under her belt.


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