DigitasLBi cleans up with Whirlpool school project

Eric Salama

Eric Salama

The Creative Data Grand Prix for 2017 went to ‘Care Counts’, an impactful and inspirational campaign for Whirlpool from DigitasLBi Chicago.

Jury president Eric Salama, CEO of Kantar, said: “At the end of the second day of judging, this campaign wasn’t on our shortlist. But then one of our jurors brought it back to the table. And the more we talked about it, the more special we realised it was.”

The core hypothesis of the campaign was that a lot of children in the US fail to turn up to school because of embarrassment about the state of their clothes. Kids with lower school attendance are more likely to end up unemployed or in prison, among other things. So Whirlpool installed washing machines and driers in schools and measured the impact this had on attendance. After a year of data collection, there was an increase in attendance and a marked improvement in the level of interaction in class and extra curricula activities among kids who had benefited from the Whirlpool intervention.

Salama said the campaign matched perfectly the criteria set by the jury: “We wanted campaigns that didn’t just use data for its own sake but had a strong creative idea at their heart. We also set a high bar for Gold Lions and the Grand Prix, which is that campaigns needed not just to raise awareness for the brand but change behaviour.”

Altogether there were five Gold winners in the category, from Australia (2), France, Russia and the US. Salama said ‘AiMEN’, a BETC Paris campaign for Canal+ ran ‘Care Counts’ close, “we liked it from the start because it made us laugh and achieved a big behaviour change.”

Harriet Palmer