Tree of Smiles – Using Social Media for Social Cause
There’s something about the joy of giving – it brings a smile not just to the receiver but also to the donor. For Christmas 2015, Inorbit wanted to use social media for social cause. The idea was to bring a platform that allowed people to play Santa while at the same time making contributions that actually helped those in need. It was then that the idea of ‘Tree of Smiles’ was born.
Idea behind ‘Tree of Smiles’
There’s much more to Christmas than festivities. In addition to Christmas Cribs, Carols, and Midnight Mass, there’s also a Santa Claus who brings bags full of happiness and travels from one place to another delivering smiles wherever he goes. The idea was to capture and collate moments when people come forward and gift something and create a Christmas Tree of Smiles that flaunted these moments.
Executing the Idea
We contacted Apne Aap Women’s Collective (AAWC) – an NGO that provides a caring and supportive platform of wholesome service to make choices for a dignified and better quality life for women and children in the red light area. We asked them how could we put a merry smile to the kids’ faces and they gave us a wish list of innocent demands – colour pencils, crayons, books, etc. Once the wish list was procured, we went looking for other brands to partner with and ‘Crossword’ and ‘Landmark’ obliged by providing us pre-packed gifts that were ready for patrons to buy and gift.
The on-ground activity went on for more than two weeks at Inorbit Malad and Inorbit Vashi with a life-size Christmas tree and a giant Santa’s sock being installed in the atriums of both the malls. All one had to do was walk into the mall, buy the gifts from partner stalls, and put them in the giant Santa’s sock.
An on-ground photographer would click two instant photographs of the donor when he went to deposit the gift – one was given to the donor along with a superhero toy and Santa-cap/reindeer-hairband as a souvenir of his/her good deed and the other smiling photograph was put up on the Christmas tree thus making it the Tree of Smiles.
The activity was promoted extensively on Facebook and Twitter, where we not only informed people about the activity but also interacted with the ones who had visited the mall and participated in the initiative. A board of several pins telling the Tree of Smiles story was also updated on Pinterest.
Quantitative data may not do complete justice while measuring the success of this initiative, as the success lies not in the quantity but in the feeling that people experienced while buying for and giving to those in need. However, we did reach some milestones.
We managed to collect more than 700 gifts for the AAWC kids across both the malls (a lot more than what we had initially anticipated) not to forget the love shown by our audiences on social media channels that kept us busy throughout the course of the activity.
The campaign gained more than 814,000 impressions on Facebook in addition to hundreds of comments on the page lauding the initiative by Inorbit.
We also managed to get more than 277,000 organic impressions on Twitter but the greatest joy was to see the kids smile when we hand-delivered their Christmas goodies.