Woe Christmas Tree
Conservation Carpathia is a Romanian foundation currently running the biggest project for forest conservation in all Europe. Dedicated to protecting and maintaining the natural beauty of the Romanian Carpathians, it needed to raise awareness on the issue of illegal deforestation in the country.
Except for a few news reports throughout the year, the most visible manifestation of illegal tree cutting is around Christmas, when tens of thousands of trees are being unlawfully removed from Romania's forests - in order to be sold for the winter holidays.
Target audience was basically everyone in Romania celebrating Christmas - with as much mainstream reach as possible. A secondary tactical target were expats, as their community is often influential on macro-decision making.
Creative strategy was to capitalise on the best-known Romanian symbol of reference to Christmas trees - the famous 'Oh Christmas Tree' carol ('O, brad frumos') - and modify its lyrics to speak about illegal deforestation.
Also, in order to appeal to the expat community as well, the carol was modified in 4 stanzas, each written
Media strategy introduced the carol into an entire array of music-linked manifestations (concerts, performances, radio, videos etc.), to shape the campaign into a 360° PR ecosystem capitalising on the specific month of December, by excellence the most musical month of the year.
Being an NGO with just a little above 2,000 fans on Facebook, the client's ambition was for at least 25% of Romanian households with Internet access to be reached by our message. This accounts for 2.5 million people (based on a National Institute of Statistics report of 2016).
A secondary objective was to determine an annual decrease of illegal deforestations by at least 25%, as compared to the previous 3 years' average (74,000 m³, Romsilva).