The Webby for Good, produced in partnership with WP Engine, is a showcase of Webby-honored projects and campaigns that are promoting social good in the world.
Describe your project. What is it, what was the elevator pitch?
Police shootings have become a major issue in America, creating a divide between citizens and police. Instead of taking sides, we wanted to create empathy and understanding, by helping people see the other person’s perspective. Based on the mobile behavior insight of turning a phone to get a better perspective, we created the first interactive film triggered by device orientation.
What key challenges did you face with this project? And how did you overcome them?
Given the polarizing nature of this delicate topic, the challenge was to find just the right tone for our message, and the technology had to be intuitive: no buttons, no app downloads, just a simple turn of the phone. By combining our technology with creative grounded in the authenticity of spoken word, we created a powerful story designed to change perspective, literally and figuratively. In addition, we had to scale the technology to work across all mobile devices, cellular networks, and Wi-Fi strengths, to reach a national optimization level.
What was the most rewarding aspect of working on your project?
Seeing people express empathy and understanding, and experience a change in perspective, in real-time, was incredibly rewarding.
Why this particular cause as the subject of your project/campaign?
VISA Rushcard was created to serve the underbanked, a community previously ignored by financial institutions, and disproportionately African American. So, for our customers, this issue was especially top of mind. But no marketers were addressing the issue because it was so sensitive and polarizing.
When working on this project, what were some of the most important conversations you had with your team?
The most important conversations were about creative and tech. Since we all learned about police violence through mobile film, we thought mobile film was the most impactful way to respond to the problem. But the real challenge was, can we find a way, through mobile consumption behavior, for people to experience an actual change in perspective? With tech, the key conversation was: How do we do this in a way that's seamless, intuitive for the user, and scaled to work across all mobile devices, cellular networks, and Wi-Fi strengths, to reach a national optimization level?
What did you learn from working on this project that you didn't know going into it? Did anything come out of it that surprised you, or that you weren't expecting?
The insight that both African Americans and the police, in essence, were feeling the same thing, was enlightening for all of us. They’re both being judged for how they look—this sentiment drove the creative.
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