In November last year, Leukaemia and Blood Cancer New Zealand (LBC) got 12 celebrities to silently stare at a camera as part of the 'silent treatment' campaign. And now, only three months later, that silence is being broken with the stories of Kiwis who have decided to shave for cure.
The integrated campaign, once again developed by .99 and brought to life by Blockhead Visual Effects, aims to spread awareness for the annual 'Shave Week' appeal that runs from 17 to 23 March.
In addition to a new monochromatic TVC, the campaign also includes a series of YouTube videos of regular Kiwis sharing the reasons why they decided to shave for cancer.
While LBC’s previous two campaigns – ‘word you hate’ and ‘silent treatment’ – initially avoided any outright mention of cancer, this year’s edition lays bare a series of stories of those who have been affected by disease.
"It was really important to us that the people and stories we featured were authentic, as we know there are so many people out there who shave to show solidarity with a friend, family member or colleague living with blood cancer," says LBC comms manager Georgie Hackett.
And although each story offers a poignant insight on a difficult topic, the narrative never descends into unwatchable melancholy. Even Dee Orr’s story about the diagnosis of her daughter Paige is told from the positive perspective of a family that made it through a crisis.
This annual push is LBC’s biggest fundraising opportunity on the calendar, and the organisation hopes to make this year’s event even more successful than the 2013 edition.
In a release, the organisers said that they hope to increase the number of participants to 3,500 and the amount of money raised to $1.7 million at this year’s event. Both of these figures would mark a 22 percent increase on the numbers achieved the previous year (in 2013, 3,200 people participated and $1.46 million were raised).
In order to keep track of the progress toward this goal, the ‘Shave for a cure’ website has also been updated and now features a thermometer that tracks the progress of the campaign.
At the time of writing, 360 people had already shaved and just over four percent of the overall target had been met. And this isn’t bad going, considering that the Shave Week only officially kicks off in mid March.
The website also features a leaderboard of the biggest donators, which is divided into three categories: individuals, schools and businesses. This strategy will certainly help to encourage some office- and school-based banter, and judging by the video featuring Hunter Fullarton it seems that LBC is encouraging Kiwis to get a little competitive.
To further push the idea that fundraising can be cool, .99 and World Clothing also collaborated with New Zealand artist Sam Yong, who designed a series of T-shirts featuring iconic Kiwi hairstyles. Both Jeremy Corbett and Hillary Barry – the ambassadors of LBC’s previous campaigns – are pictured on the website wearing the specially designed merchandise, and those interested in dressing like the celebrities can pick up a shirt from the World Clothing online catalogue for $40.
“LBC is an organisation totally committed to changing the lives of New Zealanders for the better. We trust this campaign will deliver on all fronts and will encourage Kiwis to feel great, look great and do great,” says Ben Goodale, managing director at justONE and .99.
TV Production: Blockhead Visual Effects
Creative Agency: .99
Creative Director Craig Whitehead
Art Director Greg Wylie
Copy Writer Chris Long
Senior Strategic Planner Kathryn Thomas
Head of television and motion graphics Vicki O'Leary
Digital Art Director Ryan Macpherson
Head of Design Jon Tricklebank
Studio Finished Artist Aaron Deverick
Print Operations Manager James Robson
Retouching Stephanie O'Connor
Photography Simeon Patience
Photographic Producer Elizabeth Roebeck
Digital producer Rachel Haines Villalta
Digital Design SoolimSohn
Senior Account Manager Jessica Rose
Account Executive Kate McRobie
Account Director Morgan O'Reilly
Media – Spark
Media Director Kelly Beange
Digital Director Ivan Atkins
Original Soundtrack: Liquid Studios
Composer: Peter van der Fluit
Clothing design: Sam Yong and World Clothing
Art direction: World Clothing