World Wildlife Fund (WWF) has an inherent interest in efforts to address climate change. Recognizing that the climate conference in Paris would be pivotal in addressing climate change globally, the organization developed a campaign that would have seemed daunting to the largest of organizations. For its efforts, WWF has won the first-place award for Best Government or Public Affairs Media Relations in PR Daily’s 2016 Media Relations Awards.
The campaign was launched before the conference began, and kicked into high gear during the talks with special communications targeting U.S. legislators who sought to derail an agreement and supporters sending WWF-crafted messages to legislators’ Twitter accounts.
WWF ultimately grabbed a mind-boggling 5,500 news articles, including more than 200 in top-tier global media outlets. That represented a full 25 percent of all NGO media coverage about climate change during the talks, eclipsed only by Greenpeace. The coverage also accounted for 5 percent of all news stories.
WWF didn’t stop there, though, sparking social media engagement on Facebook (one video alone reached 3.3 million people) and Twitter, where WWF was ranked the most influential non-profit brand at the negotiations.
WWF recruited several celebrities (like Susan Sarandon, Michelle Rodriguez and Josh Gad) to mobilize their fan base; the organization also followed up on the previous year’s climate conference in Peru by engaging the Spanish-speaking community.
Combined with full-page ads and other assets, the campaign played a significant role in influencing attendees and other important figures. Kudos to Steve Ertel, Ian Morrison, Susan McCarthy, Bex Young, Monica Echeverria, Chris Conner and many other WWF communicators.