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?
Introducing UnTasty Dishes, the first recipe ambush ever with Buzzfeed Tasty. Charity: water is a non-profit organization bringing clean and safe drinking water to people in developing countries.To create awareness around their organization and this vital cause, we decided to give BuzzFeed Tasty’s 84 million followers a little surprise. In place of clean water in each recipe video, we substituted a developing world reality: dirty water. Recipes included a summertime lemonade infested with leeches. A toxic algae cornbread best served with a stomach pump. And a Typhoid bacteria smoothie bowl, disinfected with bleach.
What key challenges did you face with this project? And how did you overcome them?
Our goal was to ultimately create an impactful campaign that would resonate with millions of people. But with a shoestring budget and zero paid media, the cards were stacked against us. So we had to think outside the box. By partnering with Buzzfeed Tasty, we landed on an idea that leveraged a popular social trend (bite-sized cooking videos) to tap into an instant audience of millions. We also faced the additional challenge of creating a message that would cut through the clutter in a sea of charitable advertising. How did we do it? By delivering our message in an unexpected way, when people were least expecting it. In an everyday moment when people were expecting to watch a typical recipe video, we put the global perils of dirty water right on people’s plates.
What was the most rewarding aspect of working on your project?
We were honored to work with charity: water – a non-profit organization that has been bringing clean and safe drinking water to people around the world for over 10 years. Learning more about the devastating effects of this global crisis shook us to our core, and charity: water’s passion and commitment inspired us to become advocates for the cause as well.
Why this particular cause as the subject of your project/campaign?
Dirty water is deadly. It infiltrates the lives of over 663 million people every single day and kills more people than all forms of violence – including war. Like charity: water, we believe it’s time we all work together to put an end to the global water crisis.
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?
Powerful ideas can be executed without huge budgets and over-the-top production. With smart insights, a strategic partnership, and social in tow, we were able to take on one of the biggest killers in the world – dirty water.
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