Cannes Lions

Reverse Parade

360i, New York / NEW ORLEANS TOURISM MARKETING CORPORATION / 2017

Presentation Image
Demo Film

Overview

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Credits

Overview

Description

The Reverse Parade was a pride parade that marched backwards — essentially stripping away its pride to symbolize where the country might be headed. Fourteen LGBTQ groups, plus other local organizations — over 400 volunteers —participated. As the marchers walked backwards, they stripped away festive costumes and makeup – receding back into seclusion. After disappearing, the participants ceremoniously came back and restarted the celebration in a sign of solidarity. The entire piece was filmed and released as a video on social media (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram), YouTube, along with paid media placements.

Execution

Leading into Mardi Gras in New Orleans, invitations were sent out to local LGBTQ and community groups to participate in The Reverse Parade. Additionally, local musicians also joined to provide live marching music. Ultimately, 14 LGBTQ groups, together with the local community — over 400 individuals — volunteered to march. Participants showed up on Sunday February 12th to what spectators believed would be a regular pride parade. The group marched backwards instead, removing items like costumes, wigs, wedding rings and makeup. Marchers disappeared down alleys, into buildings – leaving the parade route virtually empty. After a pause, the band led the group back in defiant celebration. Led by a “we’re never going back” banner, the band played lively music as masses of spectators joined in the festivities. The entire parade was filmed and later released as an online video, through social and paid media channels.

Outcome

The Reverse Parade generated over 20 million earned media impressions, with over 6 million views online during Mardi Gras alone. Major media outlets covered and shared the project, including TIME, ABC, and FOX, along with over 500 global LGBTQ organizations. In all, over 55 million individuals were exposed to the campaign in the first month alone. Bookings via New Orleans Tourism site were also up over 25% from previous year’s Mardi Gras period.

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