Cannes Lions

Los Angeles Welcomes Everyone with a Human-Powered Billboard

MISTRESS, Los Angeles, Ca / DISCOVER LOS ANGELES / 2018

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Overview

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Credits

Overview

Description

Our creative idea was simple: turn everyday Angelenos into an actual welcome message. At the height of the political debate, we harnessed the kindness of hundreds of Angelenos by transforming them into a giant, real-time, human-powered billboard. The billboard was emblazoned with a simple, powerful message, "Everyone is Welcome." To ensure our message was received, each volunteer held up a card, all of which came together to spell out a giant "welcome" in four different languages – Mandarin, Arabic, Spanish, and English. Every welcome sign was visible to incoming international flights touching down at LAX, and timed to that flight’s country of origin.

Execution

To find the perfect place within strict guidelines of the FAA, the agency and production company scouted scores of locations to ensure that the human welcome sign would be visible for a significant amount of time, and that we were in close proximity to the runway that tended to greet the exact flights we were focusing in on. Partnering with various airlines, we placed camera ops on several international flights to ensure aerial capture. Leading up to the activation, we conducted interviews with lots of first-generation Americans, as well as immigrants who now call Los Angeles their home. Through organic community management, we secured a few thousand volunteers to partake in our event, and made sure that we kept them engaged and motivated by providing music, food, and an engaging emcee. In the end, we developed an edit in 24 hours to seed to media.

Outcome

Our live campaign, united by the hashtag #EveryoneIsWelcome, sparked a cultural movement and quickly became a trending topic on Twitter. The activation was a launching pad for Angelenos to tell their own stories and sense of belonging in L.A. through the hashtag #EveryoneIsWelcome.

On Facebook, our campaign drove 2.6 million video views, 1.4k shares, and 4k engagements. On Instagram, our social posts garnered 644K impressions and over 13K engagements.

We received press coverage in eleven countries, and 54 news stories were written about the effort. In just 48 hours after the event, we garnered 673K media impressions worth an earned ad value of more than $1MM.

Most importantly, across the country and around the globe, we achieved our goal to let millions of people know that in Los Angeles, #EveryoneIsWelcome.

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