Cannes Lions




1 Shortlisted Cannes Lions
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In 2016, Sandy Hook Promise looked to address gun violence by teaching Americans about the clear behaviors we often miss before shooters attack.

But starting that conversation was easier said than done. Over the last decade, public discourse about gun violence had become synonymous with political arguments about gun control; and this focus on politics -- not people -- left Congress gridlocked and Americans feeling that they could do little to prevent gun violence themselves.

We created “Evan” to reframe gun violence in a more human and relatable way, showing that we all, in fact, can prevent gun violence, if we know which warning signs to recognize beforehand.

Our film depicts a seemingly quintessential high school love story, only to be upended by a school shooting. We soon realize that the shooter had exhibited each of the clear warning signs of planning a shooting in the background; no one had intervened, because we failed to recognize these distinctive warning signs.

We grabbed our audience’s attention by both framing the film as a love story and distributing it online with influencers who had no reputation for discussing guns or politics. Framing gun violence in a relatable context and through relatable figures helped to change the conversation and give Americans the tools to prevent gun violence themselves:

• Sandy Hook Promise’s “Know the Signs” message helped to more than double the amount of conversation online about preventing gun violence, with mentions of the film accounting for almost half of all conversation.

• Sandy Hook Promise received notice that their “Know the Signs” message and training programs had helped at least three schools/organizations to avert incidences of violence in the months following our campaign.

• Both the Department of Homeland Security and Disney reached out to Sandy Hook Promise about using “Evan” for educational purposes in their workplaces.

• 4,724 schools/organizations signed up for Sandy Hook Promise training programs in the months following our campaign.

• In the weeks following our campaign, Sandy Hook Promise earned 11x the average number of weekly signups from individuals who looked to train community members to recognize warning signs.

• “Evan” earned over 2 billion media impressions and $26 million of earned media.

• “Evan” was viewed over 115 million times and shared over 1.75 million times online.

o Reaction videos, in which viewers recorded their shock about missing the warning signs, earned more than 1.75 million views alone.

1 Sandy Hook Promise Internal Post Report, Spring 2017

2 Ibid.

3 School/Organization Testimonials Sent to Sandy Hook Promise

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