Helen Keller once said that the most beautiful things in the world cannot be seen, they must be felt with the heart. For people gifted with vision, their eyes serve as windows to the world, yet they fail to see the plight of the very world they can see. But, for the visually impaired, the world is full of imagination. What they cannot see, they more than make up for with their limitless imagination.
This World Turtle Day on May 23, a group of visually impaired children helped show the visually gifted world, how beautiful turtles are, while drawing attention to the conservation of this endangered species.
Men’s lifestyle brand, Turtle teamed up with Premasree, a free residential home for visually impaired children for its Turtle Day initiative, “The Blindspot’. Aptly named, ‘The Blindspot’ has been conceptualized by JWT, and is designed to be an eye-opener for all of us who can see, yet refuse to really see.
Turtle arranged a workshop with the kids who had never seen a turtle but felt they were beautiful creatures that need to be saved. The kids were handed drawing sheets, colour pencils and colourful play dough and asked to paint or sculpt the turtle of their imagination. With a little help, they created some never-seen-before depictions of turtles in vivid colours. The activities were filmed and formed part of its digital awareness campaign.
A digital film captured the ignorance of visually gifted people about turtles. An anchor goes around asking people in public whether they knew about turtles or that the species is soon going to be extinct if not saved now. None of them knew much about them but were interested to know what they could to conserve turtles. Just then a turtle is described by a visually impaired girl and the film takes the viewer to ‘The Blindspot’, to the workshop where visually impaired kids are busy bringing their imagination to life.
The apparel brand then leveraged social media to spread the cause of the turtle. All the beautiful turtle creations were shared on the social media properties of the brand, along with pictures of the little artists. Social media users were invited to like, share and donate points which will add to the contributions by Turtle to TSA (Turtle Surveillance Alliance).
In addition to showcasing the creations on social media, Turtle unveiled the creations in select stores on World Turtle Day. Limited edition t-shirts were also created featuring the kids’ drawings, the proceeds from the sales were contributed to the cause.
Leveraging social capital for a cause
Last year, the apparel brand released a four-part video series as part of its turtle conservation campaign, “#SaveLittleShelly” for World Turtle Day. The month-long social media driven campaign took the storytelling route with an animated baby turtle called Shelly. Viewers were taken through the journey of little Shelly right from the time she hatches till she reaches out to the sea, after having braved a number of natural predators on the way, thus educating them about how turtles are going extinct. The series was taken forward with the help of users’ likes and shares that translated into donations.
‘The Blindspot’, in comparison, is a different take to build awareness and spark user action on turtle conservation. Banking on visually impaired kids to open our eyes, to take away our blindspot, is a clever concept to drive home its point. Sharing the kids’ imaginations on social media makes for a memorable call-to-action campaign driven by social media.
Turtle’s latest campaign is yet another brick in its brand storytelling wall, one that further reinforces the brand’s association with the conservation of an endangered species.